Poetry is just the evidence of life. If your life is burning well, poetry is just the ash. Leonard Cohen

Tuesday, October 4, 2011

Sticks and Stones Are a Cakewalk Compared to Girls

image source
Change the tone just a bit
Emphasize the words just a little differently and
a compliment becomes 
an insult
comfort becomes
Girls do it so well
It's instinctive, this
verbal torture
so effective in wearing down
victims yet 
so easy to deny
Nothing visible
but the scars last longer
than black eyes or
broken bones
No locker room brawls
but plenty of hits taken
Better to be invisible than try
to walk the narrow balance beam between
virgin and whore and risk falling
on the wrong side
Even the agnostics
say a small prayer 
Don't let me be the ugliest or
have the flattest chest, for a special hell
is reserved for her
Wads of toilet paper descend upon her head, her lap
like snowballs of cheap Charmin
to stuff in her unnecessary bra
for some tits
Then the laughter rains down
the bell rings
and it's over
for today
the pack will hunt again


Pat Hatt said...

Wow I'll take the sticks and stones, with a few chipped bones over those awful girls and their silly curls..haha

Brian Miller said...

very nice...you did take up the girls perspective...and it can be such a harrowing time growing up...very well penned...

Fireblossom said...

God, I hate that deniability. It's a weasel-y way to be.

Elisabeth said...

Powerful stuff here, Lolamouse, and unfortunately too true.

Anonymous said...

I think we all have a few scars... be careful little mouth what you say.

hedgewitch said...

Oh so true, lm--I see you took that thought and ran with it. Good for you. I had the nerve to have a funny name in school and got to hear it chanted in derision for my entire jr high career, so you're completely right, no exemption for any gender for the slightest bit of difference. I wish I could say this changes with adulthood, but sadly,often it doesn't. Nice sharp piece.

gautami tripathy said...

Being a late bloomer, I can relate to this...

a song, this is?

Adura Ojo said...

Kids can be so cruel to each other. The effects of bullying can last a lifetime in some cases. Well penned.

James Rainsford said...

As an ex Head of Year in a very large school I knew these girls so well. Masterful, perceptive and so very, very true.

JustRex said...

Too true. Too true. Sharp nasty little tongues like razors, they have. And you captured it perfectly.

Beachanny said...

Oh "Bless Her Heart" is the intro to a vast hell of Southern insults, often issued to "her" best friend to make sure they're delivered with "love". Poor thing, she can't help that...
What's worse it becomes generational, passed down and around through communities. It takes true intestinal fortitude to cast out that behavior in oneself. Bully or Bullier - neither is ever released. At some point we all need "awareness" and to realize unless we support other women, none of us will reach our potential.

Anonymous said...

Oh, this gave me chills. It's deeply disturbing--what people do to each other.

You did a wonderful job of portraying bullying and the feeling that it can impart. This would be a good write to be shared with thegirleffect.org.

Ed Pilolla said...

it is the world of girls, or young women. and i suppose it doesn't stop at a developing age. teasing, taunting, these things stick with us. it's usually not the compliments that brand us in the world of school. it's the hate.

ayala said...

So true...it could be so hard..you did it justice!

Anonymous said...

Hi Lola, Pat here. Can't comment under my name for some reason).
This is a very good and powerful piece. Girls can be so mean...

Ann LeFlore said...

Some times they are so cruel and yes you are right they will never stop. I found out that when I was young and they did this they are all cowards and if you attack them back they do stop and will leave you alone. But you always have to fight them back because they have a lot of followers who thing they are better than you.

Christine said...

sounds like my high school years, couldn't even attend my grad party, didn't feel like being surrounded by all those cats

Maxwell Mead Williams Robinson Barry said...


Charles Elliott/Beautyseer said...

Sad. I have always wondered about bullies. They pretend to uphold shared values, but seem mostly to be afraid that someone will notice that THEY are different, that THEY don't measure up in some way.

And why do women hold women back so hard? Seems like men and society in general would be enough of an impediment to female achievement, but whenever a woman seems to be achieving there seem to be a million other women with their claws out!

Anonymous said...

Girls had it rough! I used to think we boys did, tumbling in the school courtyard to fisticuffs after school let out. But bloodied and bruised, we could always shake hands afterwards. I just can't imagine how you could ever forgive someone for doing the things you described here.

hyperCRYPTICal said...

There is so much truth in this - I recognise it, being one that didn't quite fit during my schooldays.

Anna :o]