A quiet rage (a poem)

June 7, 2021

All my life 

I have asked for permission

to move, to speak, to breathe.

All my life 

I have been told how to exist in the world

by men with hair greying at their temples, 

with reading glasses, 

with the rounded bellies of middle age 

and shelves full to overflowing with books 

written by other men.

All my life I have taken up 

only such a small space;

nice girls do not speak so loudly, 

do not say such things, 

do not wear tops cut down to there.


I told my husband I am one of three billion women

walking the earth filled with a quiet rage.

And some of us will spend all our lives – 

will go to our graves – 

still pushing it down.

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