In Case Of Emergency…Break Glass.

“I am deliberate and afraid of nothing.” -Audre Lorde

What does it look like  to make a woman less?

Is it to tell her what she is not

What she cannot become

What she is not allowed to access

What she is never allowed to think, dream or see?

What is it like to make a woman less?

Is it that her charm and her wit are disrespectful?

Defensive?

Dismissive?

Flippant?

That she is just too damn much?

What does it look like to make a woman less?

To say that her ambition is a deterrent?

That her desire is not on par with or even

Any kind of parallel keel to that is expected of her?

To be honored by those around her

What do you do to make a woman less?

To make her doubt her presence, her purpose?

To make her believe that her voice is noise

To allow her to remember that her hands are onlhy for service?

To give out

But never take

That her eyes should only shine from

The sacrifice it brings

That her tears

Whether streamed fluent

Or ocean prolific

Are those to be

Are waters to sampled, surfed

And taken

Enjoyed because she gave them—

And that should be enough?

What do you to make a woman less?

Tell her she can never become

That she is bound

Only by what is told to her.

(c) Jennifer Bush-Harris, June 2020