Give Me A Kiss

When people started asking my young daughter to give them hugs and kisses (people she had never met before) I felt angry and inspired to write this poem. As I sat down with pen and paper, I was flooded with memories of all the sexism I had experienced in my own childhood and young adulthood. It’s NOT okay, and often leads to tragic situations for women and girls. That was what I hoped the reader of the poem would strongly feel by the end.  And it’s up to all of us to change that ending for future generations of girls.

A Girl’s Life

 

She’s so cute.

The store clerk said.

Give Me A Kiss.

Told.

Directed.

Expected.

 

I was four.
4 years
Living

a girl.

 

No. I said.

Refused.

Ran.

Pleaded.

Shhh….
Four years

Living

A girl

Expecting

to be heard.

 

She’s so cute!

The school boy said.

Kiss me!

Told.

Directed.

Expected.

 

I was eight.

Eight years

Living

A girl

No. I said.

Refused.

Ran.

Pleaded.

Shhh…

Eight years

Living a girl

Expecting to be heard.

That’s so cute

The teacher said

Kiss up

Told.

Directed.

Expected.

I was twelve.

12 years living

A girl

No. I said.

Refused

Ran

Pleaded

Shhh…

12 years living

A girl expecting to be heard.

You’re so cute.

The prom date said

Let’s kiss.

Told.

Directed.

Expected.

Sixteen years living

a girl

No. I said.

Refused.

Ran.

Pleaded.

Shhhh…

16 years living a girl

expecting to be heard

Hey, gorgeous!

The construction worker said.

Kiss this!

Told.

Directed.

Expected.

20 years

Living a girl

No. I said.

Refused

Ran

Pleaded

Shhhh…

20 years living a girl

Expecting to be heard

You’re sexy

The stranger said

Give me a kiss

Told.

Directed.

Expected.

No! I scream.

Refuse.

Run.

Plead.

Shhhh…

24 years

Living

A girl

No longer

Expecting

to be

heard.

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