Poem per week: Modesty, Girls by Rosa Stevens

Modesty, Girls

 

Before then we wanted to be older. 

12 year olds in push-up bras and heels,

Disguising our fears behind foundation, 

Scavenging for some self-respect.

Pleasing boys, yearning to catch up.

"I'm not a feminist"

 

My school taught me more about rape culture than taxes.

More about female oppression than politics. 

But not taught in classrooms with pencils and paper. 

Engrained in us to show our place in this world.

Engrained through two little words:

Modesty, girls.

 

Because my skin, my knees, my thoughts are scandalous.

Because the boys in my class won't be able to concentrate if I don't cover up. 

Because my legs might cost them their education.

 

Yet in other parts of the world my vagina costs me mine. 

 

 

 

Rosa Leonora Stevens

 

 

 

artwork in thumbnail by Rosa Leonora Stevens. Find me on instagram @rosastevenspoetry and @rosaleonoraart

Features Editor at Her Campus Bristol