I Am the Woman

I’ve just taken three months away from my desk as I moved the farm and office and settled in. This morning is my first morning back at my desk.  To mark the occasion, here is a poem I wrote over 20 years ago.  It’s been bubbling up in my mind these past weeks as I weeded basil and strawberries, sifted through boxes, adjusted to life on the frontier, off the grid.  It’s good to be back.  Thanks for visiting. 

I’m the aunt who curses and drinks.

You’ve read about her, I’m apt to think.

Be careful my nieces, don’t get too near–never know

Who’ll you’ll meet, can’t be sure what you’ll hear.

 

I’m the sister who blurts family truths out,

Can’t resist being graphic, is known even to shout.

Don’t visit too often, don’t stay too long;

Never can tell when I’ll say something wrong.

 

I am the daughter who was terse and morose

Stared cross-eyed at guests, could never play host.

“She’s sure to blossom one day,” they said as

They strolled down the walk and I hurried to bed.

 

I am the wife who won’t do laundry or shop

Rather lie around with a novel, and God–

I’m known not to mop till my feet stick to the tile.

I’d rather talk on the phone and cry till I smile.

 

I’m the mother who spares him no truth,

Says the word fuck even though it’s uncouth.

I’ve told him that I don’t like brussel sprouts, either,

And he gets to drink Coke without having a fever.

 

I am the lover who tries to feel without threat

What a lover should feel, what a lover should get.

In the balance between loving man, loving woman

Took me years to jill off without hearing a sermon.

 

I am the woman who saw the barbed wire

Entrapping her sex with its masculine ire.

I was young when I felt its confining embrace

Earned freedom by snapping it back in the face.

1994

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2 Comments

Filed under poetry, politics

2 responses to “I Am the Woman

  1. Welcome back! I love this poem, Carolyn … it speaks to the other face of beauty, one I relate well to. Thank you for posting it!

  2. Ang

    Love it! Love you!

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