this is just a draft of something i was writing while on the airplane today

i explode
with surprise
and disbelieving laughter
when the guy behind the fastfood counter says to my friend
“you are keeping her out of trouble, right?”
my friend is not sure what he should say when the man continues
“she likes to get wild on the weekend right?”
“i can tell by her face.”
writing his words on paper makes them sound sarcastic
but i left the conversation wishing i had chosen a different outfit.
the next night,
i explode with fear
the same friend and i are walking the same street
when a man i do not know makes eye contact, smirks,
and makes a real effort to walk across the sidewalk and bump into my chair
he continues walking but i feel his eyes still on me and hear his feet stopping
quickly i tell my friend we have to leave and he listens without asking questions
again i am left wishing i had chosen different outfit
i have known the fickle nature of both extreme invisibility
and visibility
of always being on, of not being able to make a mistake
while simultaneously not being seen, cut in lines and forgotten
so where does this leave me you ask?
today— just wishing i had chosen a different outfit



Filed under disability, woc, writing/poetry

4 responses to “exploding

  1. Ouch, that made me wince reading it… I wonder if there really are people who think, subconsciously, that we ‘re somehow to blame for not putting on different bodies just as we change our outfits, so as to be more socially acceptable in one way or another.

    It was good to see you in person over the weekend. 🙂

  2. I’m not sure I got that. Is the poem saying that both of those men you encountered viewed you sexually, the first in a positive and the second in a threatening way?

  3. yeah but both were negative experiences.

    i felt funny posting it b/c i don’t want to give the idea that a woman’s choice of clothes should be a factor in whether she is raped or experiences some form of abuse. at the same time, when both of these things happened i left the situation wishing i had covered my body and frustrated that other people could make or give comments on me leaving me feeling again, like i don’t own what is mine. it’s a really strange feeling for me to feel noticed and marked, this summer was the first time i’ve experienced these things that are common in other women’s lives

  4. Can’t find an about page, sorry about that, but I just nominated you for an award, not sure if you will get the pingback or not, it’s my top post here: http://hymes.wordpress.com/2008/07/31/someone-gave-me-an-award-my-nominees-below/

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