30 November, 2009 at 14:15 (Uncategorized)

I was taught to have self-respect when it came to men,
They were, after all, the enemy,
Even to a liberal egalitarian mother like mine.
None of us can escape the rumour mill
Of a myriad of anti-feminist home-makers
in conjunction with a million more feminists,
Men are the enemy.
Never more so than when it comes to S-E-X.
That moment when a man will steal
What a woman owns
And it’s the same message
From the stay-at-homes
To the bra-burners
Men will come to your bed,
Have come to it through the ages
As the enemy, the pillager, the rapist,
And really it’s all about theft.
For a woman’s worth is defined
In purely capitalist terms.
I have self-respect when it comes to men,
Because the back of my mind knows,
They are the enemy.

I would never let a man get away with half
Of what women do to me.
Of what I have let women do to me.
They are not the enemy
And there is no book
saying that she’s simply not that into me.
If a man, joked about being gay,
In response to sleeping with me.
I’d never let him touch me again.
I’d walk away,
After all,
Men are the enemy.
If a man, told me he loved me only after a drink or three,
I’d walk away,
And in fairness I did,
But nevertheless –
women are not the enemy,
Therefore I cannot respect myself
Enough to have me leave
Before the morning after,
And I can hear the laughter
Of a thousand lesbians
Who worked out what Sappho
(the barking dog)
never did.
Nor I,
who model myself on the poet
no one knows anything of.

These lesbians,
These twentieth century lovers,
These, my Sapphic sisters
Know
What the bra-burners, the home-makers and I
Have never learnt
That self-respect does not come
Defined externally
Assuming my assets and my soul
Are housed only within
This casing,
This body,
This hymen.
And sex is not, the act of piercing
It is not the act of tearing
It is not
Defined in any such physical terms.
If only I had paid attention
When I was in bed
With all these women
Who have hurt me
These women who desert me
Without a second glance,
No thought for I cannot matter
Not compared to
The enormous prick so obvious
And erect
Who stands in the kitchen making demands.

If I had paid attention between the sheets
I would not be Sappho
Still barking in the streets.

I was taught that self-respect
Did not come from within
But was defined without,
In opposition to
The man who would come,
The men who have come
Through the ages.
But my sisters,
they had no need to but they thought,
what is it that the men have been taught?
They thought,
Where is the self-respect that stands
Not erect but proud,
And on it’s own,
Where is the sex that makes itself at home,
In the finger, in the fist, right up to the wrist,
And tight up against us all.
This is not about what we are worth,
This is not a mercantile matter,
If it were then we would all be spread
As whores upon the platter

(And I was taught by the bra-burners
that men would look on us as if
that was all that we were worth
but they did not explain
what to replace it with).

What did they gain?
What have I gained?
A knowledge,
That between the sheets
It is not about price,
Or about cost,
But about a heart that beats
In communication, communion, at one
With another.
This is not about theft
But about that more subtle of crimes
Which has had women confined
To the back row.
This is about the silence
Enforced
This is not theft
This is far worse.

And I do not have self-respect,
Never have had
Which is why
Upset with a woman
I will believe the lie
Or exchange the sadness
For utter bliss,
And ignore all the worry
At the price of a kiss.

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17 November, 2009 at 22:21 (Uncategorized)

Let me go back to the start,
Or, if not the start,
then to driving in your car with the radio on.
Let me go back to the first night
you asked me to lay beside you
and I,
I lay there and loved you
and kept my mouth shut.

Let me go back to the start,
Or, if not the start,
then to the conversations.
Let me go back to the first night
with the candles, before you
replied,
and I wished that I had lay there
and kept my mouth shut.

Let me go back to the start,
Or, if not the start,
then to any moment when you and I were friends.
Let me go back to a time
before that conversation with your best friend
and I,
I sat there and my heart broke
I kept my mouth shut.

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14 November, 2009 at 01:11 (Uncategorized)

I was going in as you were going out
and I dread what you said to me.
I was coming in as you were coming out
and we nearly made it, but,
we still believed.

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