By Carolyn Blair
I want to thank you for letting me know that I’m not good enough.
That my skin is too dark, my nose is too wide, and my lips are just not right.
I want to thank you,
I want to thank you for reading me bedtime stories about celebrity diets and ways I can attract a man with a Victoria’s Secret push-up bra.
I want to thank you,
I want to thank you for tucking me in at night with my insecurities and tears,
I want to thank you.
I want to thank you for waking me up to liposuction mornings and self-hating coffee,
Where make-up is an essential.
Can you tell me if that Mac lip-gloss comes in the shade of self-confidence? I’ll take four.
Fall 2009. Feminist Theory class. Class assignment: read pages 15-17.
It says “It’s learning how to stand alone, unpopular, and sometimes reviled.
Words into sentences, sentences into paragraphs, paragraphs into an essay,
A tear kisses my cheeks, while my eyes are trap in the warmth of feminism.
Where was NBC and Good Morning America with this ground breaking news?
Of course it will be hard for me to move when the strings of male domination is holding me back from the truth.
How can I tell my unborn child that the same person who gave him life is oppressed not one way but two ways?
Like magicians, the government sprinkles its magic dust on everything, Making America seemed so great. The government can do that you sometimes.
Illusions of golden streets, large houses, and picket fences blinds you from the existence of racism and sexism.
The world won’t accept a man with feminine tendencies, so the brick of masculinity chokes him. Never allowing him to express his sexuality freely,
Don’t ask don’t tell policy becomes his bible, when homophobic stares leave reminders on his chest that he is a man. Nothing more, nothing less.
I cannot be that girl anymore. Where my vagina is just your pit stop and your lies are submerged in the black sheets of my mind.
Using my body to vanquish your insecurities and validate your masculinity.
What about me?
I used to think I can use my body to make you love me, but before I could say those three words you got “Oh I think she likes me” hives and ran away from me.
I became your housewife who does your sexual laundry.
Stuck here doing your dishes, glass shatters leaving me to pick up the pieces of my self-esteem.
But since I meet feminism, I no longer need you.
Alice Walker, Bell Hooks, Angela Davis serenade me with their words,
Taught me that confidence comes from within. That my body is mine and mine alone.
I don’t subscribe to your smiles anymore. I subscribe to the liberated issues of Ms. Magazine, Drench myself in feminist theory, and I can easily tell how race and gender intersect with each other.
Like etch-a-sketch, your scars of sexual advancements are erased from my body and replaced with divine black feminist poetry of June Jordan and Sapphire.
You vultures can pick at me all you want, I’m a womanist and this is my story.