Poem: “existing while being female” – The Feminist Wire

Poem: “existing while being female”

By Jenuine Poetess





I don’t want to wear special nail polish

don’t want to pay for self-defense classes

don’t want to maintain this hyper-vigilance

don’t want to feel this persistent dull ache

of distrust

of most men


I don’t want to stay in after dark

don’t want to be scolded for walking myself to my car

because I go out on my own

because I don’t think I should miss out

on my own life


I don’t want to bear the burden

of keeping others’ lusty, greedy thoughts in check

don’t want to wonder if I:

hadn’t written that one poem

hadn’t worn that one dress

hadn’t slipped up and smiled that one time

if it would have ended differently


I don’t want to teach my nieces

how to keep themselves safe

I want to teach my nephew

how to honor, respect, and cherish




Jenuine_Poetess-Jenuine_Poetess_August_2014Jenuine Poetess has been poeming her way throughout Los Angeles and Central Texas for over 7 years.  She is the founder of, In the Words of Womyn (ITWOW), an international grass-roots program for womyn of all ages, languages, styles, levels, and genres to practice, explore, and discuss written and spoken-word arts.  ITWOW has empowering womyn to give sound to our story and volume to our voice in California, Texas, and Lebanon since 2010.  Please connect with her via any of the following: TwitterFacebook, and at

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