Our ‘Hysteria’

You say I’m hysterical because

I fear the uncontrollable, the fallible

I cry for those struggling and crumbling

I panic under stress, becoming a mess

I hurt from the weight of your standards, your hate—

but my feelings are not hysteria they are criteria.


Criteria of being human,

of having empathy

of thinking

of feeling

of worrying


You blame my emotions on my sex,

say I am inferior because I am too complex.

You paint me as dependent, disposable, delusional, emotional;

meanwhile, you pride yourself on your simplicity:

Eat, Fuck, Sleep repeat.

No emotion because that is for the weak.


You strong man.

Unrelenting hunter, entitled conqueror, manipulative savior.

Us weak women.

Can't control our emotions

Can’t make our own decisions

Can't function—

because our wires are too crossed

too complex



We are complex.

but that is what makes us human.


All different, but one we are strong.

Fighting, uniting,

working to make a better place

for our sisters and daughters.


We can’t stop, won’t stop these tides of changing waters

We will work.

Dig in our heels

to keep turning the wheels;

the wheels of progression ever spinning

powered by waves of women

from Cleo to Elizabeth to Wollenscraft

Qiu Jin and Stanton and Susan B Anthony

to Davis and Steinem and Walker


Even today, that wave flows across the world.

Powered by women like Malala, RBG, and Stacy Abrams

Women like AOC, bell hooks, and Adichie

To women like Cullors, Burke, and Michelle Obama


So fear our “hysteria”

because those we cry for will persevere.

Our panicked state will bring us together

and we will break the standards of hate you create

because we—are not afraid


This poem is about: 
My community
My country
Our world
Poetry Terms Demonstrated: 


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