Sister, I Feel It Too

To the men who catcall me on my way to school

and to my sisters who experience it too, 

 

How much more skin

do I need to cover?

Every inch,

every mile?

Until you forget that I am even

A woman?

 

Or is it not the skin,

but the space

that is so erroneous

my feet slapping against the

pavement

sound like gunshots

 

Cover your butt they say,

the swinging and the swaying

are too much to bear

 

Tie up your hair they say,

it is long like silk

and far too easy to touch

 

Cover your cheeks,

dampened by emotion,

no one cares to see your tears

 

But most importantly,

cover your mouth

no one has time for your impatient words

 

I know the waves of anger

that crash against your skull-

I hear them too

 

I know the rising tide

that never ceases-

I see it too

 

I know the water

that laps at your feet, sister-

I feel it too

 

But you must swim-

hair undone

and mouth unhinged

 

But your must swim-

skin uncovered

and wet cheeks unabashed

 

This tide will never recede

this is the water that runs

through your bloodstream

and saturates your pores

 

This is the water that turns your

cheeks

into a riverbed

 

But do not let it sink you-

swim, sister,

swim.

 

This poem is about: 
Me
My community

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