color girl

By: Adel Clifton


Sometimes I feel that these sheets of paper

frame the door that separates me from

           her- warm-colored-woman world

where lines of poetry are long

                                wrought with imagery

Where lady moons and peach-headed girls

drink coffee in red lipstick

Dripping the juice of professor affair

With dry paper cigarettes in their mouths

I am but a fox

nestled in her den

dreaming of the smell of sun-dried boats

and crop tops

still apologetic of her sexuality

Minnows, they keep saying,

are strength and rebellion

But my pen tastes only salt water in a

fishless bowl

Now I just read old feminist manifestos

smelling the worn paper wisdom

I shall try to learn French in order

to fit in

Write poems that are complicated

Braid my hair with coffee filters and

opiate daffodils

Buy a hat

I know it is not all good

And I know I will be there before

I find the key

   For now, though, I remember pale pink

and leather boots

until my bleached hair grows long

with dust, dirt, and womanhood unwisdom

You’ve got to know yourself. You’ve got to know what ignites your magic, what fires your soul into performing majestic acts of love. You’ve got to know yourself so much that not even a hundred voices will drown yours. You’ve got to own yourself, this journey is all yours. All yours. No one can do it and you decide whenever you are ready to embark on it. Unlearn, learn, master yourself and love yourself or else they will define you and that’s a poisonous kind of life. That’s death.

Angelina Jolie Says Her Womanhood Is Not Dependent On Her Body Parts

Two years after Angelina Jolie wrote an op-ed in the New York Times explaining her decision to have a double mastectomy, the actress haspenned another piece to announce her more recent choice to remove her ovaries and Fallopian tubes. Throughout it all, the 39-year-old actress has challenged society’s assumptions about what it means to be a desirable woman.

To understand the meaning of womanhood we have to start with God. If He is indeed “Creator of all things visible and invisible” He is certainly in charge of all things, visible and invisible, stupendous and miniscule, magnificent and trivial. God has to be in charge of details if He is going to be in charge of the overall design.
—  Elisabeth Elliot, Let Me Be a Woman

I was taught to hide tampons and pads

To conceal these necessities

When they became public I would cringe

The blood would rush to my face

Boys laughed,

I felt so ashamed

My head hung low

On my way to the girls room

But suddenly, one day I wasn’t ashamed

I shouted out looking for a tampon

All the guys still giggled

What’s so funny about a tampon

One day you will have daughters

Will you shame her like you do me?

Will she walked with her head hung

Her eyes fixed on the ground, tampon in hand?

How dare you laugh at my womanhood

I never laughed as your voice cracked

Or as you readjusted your penis and testicles

What is so funny about my vagina?

You become the same boy

Who runs his hand eagerly up my thigh

Is my vagina funny now?

I stop you, reminiscing about years ago

I ask if you remember

You chuckle and say yes

“You and your goddamn tampons,

That’s disgusting.”

Disgusting is you

Putting your penis inside me

But not being able to handle the fact that

I menstruate