a bitch. women are supposed to be ladies in the street but will tear skin under sheets. i’m told: never raise your voice. speak gently. submit. hold your opinion against your lips and when you admit to it, make sure it comes out as a butterfly wing suggestion. don’t disagree. don’t undermine someone else’s authority, regardless of whether or not they deserve your respect. someone touches you, just move away from them. don’t hit. don’t talk back. be like the ruins of rome, only beautiful if you can’t hear your quiet death.
the girl with strength, who can outrun everyone and who is stronger than her boyfriend. “see the thing about boys,” says my daddy, “is that you have to let them win.” i sat at home and read stories about artemis and wanted to become the huntress, too. i wanted to howl at the moon, i wanted to slay the beasts that bested me, i wanted to rule my kingdom with bloody fists. but girls are never athletes, never supposed to be “built,” regardless of the fact civilizations were constructed on our spines and we made homes in war by the steel of our ribs. never be strong. we are supposed to wilt.