Poetry: The Word Dyke

by: Elaine Body 

You say the word dyke
As if I am going to lose my breath
As if you’ve said a word I haven’t heard

You puff up your chest
For me to get pissed and spit in your direction
So you may feel justified
That I am just another bitch

Sit with me for a minute…

It is my turn to point out the obvious
You have a penis
And you walk with the assumption
That you have more of a right
To fuck a woman than I do

Let me tell you something sir

I have traveled women’s backs
I’ve felt their spine tremble beneath my hands
I’ve watched them sleep
I am still learning how to catch their ghosts
I’ve seen their quivers, shivers, and cracks

To love a woman is a brave act
One of the most dangerous
We are good at ripping each other apart
Be careful—

Women are not a contest
They are not something to be owned, fucked, or caught
They do not keep guns cocked inside their mouths
Women already know how to speak in blades of metal

And when she crumples to the floor
Do not try to offer a solution
Do not try to fix her
Let her re-build
Let her re-build herself

So let me tell you something sir
You say the word dyke
As if it insults my spine
And my bones are now angry
But I am more of a dyke
Than you are a man
And I don’t need balls dangling between my legs
To prove that.


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