My first bout of sexism occurred at 13, 
Until this point I’d been free, 

Free from my crime of being a women, 

Free from those looks, you know the kind, 

Those eyes, the ones that look but don’t see, 

I was free, 

Then he took that away from me. 

A comment so passive,

that made me insecure, 

he was 13 too, sure, 

No idea what he’d done,

Whilst he looked at my bum, 

laughed and said.

“Nice arse, shame about the face.” 

I was red with disgrace, 

my world was undone. 

So then I made a change,

 applied makeup so thick, 

The foundation was orange, 

My eyes black as night,

It’s alright, 

I was safe, 

With my made up face. 

Then another boy laughed, 

noticed the mask, 

Pulled out a face wipe, 

And moved pretty fast. 

The white soon was orange, 

the laughter increased, 

My safety had ceased, 

Leaving me vulnerable once more. 

When I was 15,

my dad asked if I was gay, 

Said I didn’t dress prettily, 

That girls weren’t normally this way. 


He asked if I’d kissed boys, 

Said he wasn’t being mean, 

Just curious as I wasn’t 

The “expected girl teen.” 

See I’ve never liked kissing

To me it seems violent. 

No one should posses my mouth, 

Restrain my tongue, 

Render me silent.

At 16 my first boyfriend, 

Was your usual ex, 

Obsessed with sex, 

Didn’t like I’d said no

Told his friends I was “frigid” 

He was quick to go. 


At 17, at a bar, 

A guy tried his moves 

I filled silence with chatter, 

But he scanned my breasts, 

What I said didn’t matter.
He told me “I was pretty on the inside” 

Made me wish that I could hide

And run,

run from this prejudiced place, 

Trying to hide my face, 

I took myself home. 

At 18 on a trip, to la Vatican Rome, 

A man had me corned, 

Never been so alone. 

I asked him to stop, 

But he ignored my cries. 

Too frightened to scream 

Lust filled his eyes. 

He pressed himself against me

 as witness’s became blind, 

Thanks to friend’s help, 

I got out just in time. 

At 19, I have two friends who were raped, 

Three who have been assaulted

But we’re lucky to escape. 

My university warned girls to take a class in karate 

Claimed that 1 in 3 would be invaded 

That campus wasn’t one big party.

Not for us, not for girls. 

We claim our society is modern and good, 

That we’ve irradicated sexism, 

That we’ve done all we could. 

So what do you think? 

Think women are free? 

That we don’t avoid alleyways? 

That sounds like bullshit to me. 


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