Slut, whore, hag, crone, bitch, skank. Words that not even my predictive text can summon. Erasure or respect? I cannot tell.
Witch, temptress, the harbinger of all human suffering. An infernal harpy, a confounding wench.
The supreme man’s afterthought; God, ess.
“Such a nasty woman,” a cunt.
A ball and chain… yet it is I who is wedded to a house.
The power to give life rests within me. Depends on me. Relies on me. I can give it, and I can take it, at whim. For without my body new life cannot survive. My body. My choice.
Does that make you uncomfortable you harbingers of destruction? You writers of laws, of constitutions… of rights?
The rights of men.
Like bumbling rhinoceros’ you’ve kept yourselves busy putting out our flame. Stomp, stomp, stop. Stomp, stomp, stomp. Yet the flame intensifies despite your efforts to control it. Despite your efforts to use it against us while tied to a stake, by you. Still murdered every week, by you.
Slowly I assert myself, though you call that aggressive. Gradually I begin to lead, though you will call me bossy. Increasingly I stand up and speak out with passion, which you will call shrill hysteria.
You’re afraid of me. I like that.
The world of men is broken. The land raped, the air violated, the people oppressed.
You have failed all but the very few. You’ve even failed your own.
I will nurture. I will heal. I will bond.
With the warmth of a whore, the wisdom of a crone, the tenacity of a bitch, the innate intelligence of a nasty woman, and with the ever-powerful words of Angelou ringing in my ears, I will rise.
It is time.
(Inspired by yet another conversation thread on Senator Larissa Water’s (Australian Greens) Facebook page attempting to address the issue of gendered violence which was overshadowed, yet again, by misogyny trolls with their sexist slurs and the dismissive comment, “what about men?”… Men, the ones who’ve created and legislated society since the dawn of civilisation yet resent any discussion not centred on the male experience.)
© Sarah J. Baker 2020. All Rights Reserved.