Whispered Words

Sophie Moniz is a Philosophy and Spanish student, interested in languages and language; the way they affect our ways of thinking and acting (or relations or behaviour, things of that nature).

She’s kissing the whispers of my world
that want to hurl words
so unheard
unlike all those passing comments made, absurd,
and yet the weight they hold is swept under conscience because
“you know what I mean”.
No- let’s speak the first defences society has passed to our lips
and throw around that “that’s so gay” because you’re faced with
humans of the same sex acting soft or cute,
and because she was born in a pink suit
you’re not being degrading or segregating her,
No, just shifting the discomfort,
and after all she can’t really be gay, look she’s been “ladylike” in her ways!
No- you’re not homophobic because you can joke about it
and can’t anyone take a joke these days?


Let’s pass around these words because they’re quick and easy,
like her when she had sex with Tony,
oh he’s such a lad, and have you seen her body!
No- please, continue playing the shame game,
it was effortless and what more would you want from the words you use?
You’d never meant for them to abuse her
and yet here she stands, her life shaped
by the thoughtless impact of your sight
and you never thought that your words might help
feed the shift in reality
from the one that stinks so strongly
with preconceived ideas
and fears.
Not a momentary sewage stench,
No: a stench that sits muggy in the air, suffocating,
but those who made it are everywhere, unaware,
that there it prowls,
What comes next?


On the edge of no more stereotypes
deciding who’s a “dyke”
and who gets to be good at ball- you see,
she didn’t “grow a pair” she’s too wimp, too “pussy”, too small
to play rough and tough,
mind you she was never treated like someone who could be good enough
because she wasn’t full of testosterone, and you see if she did act like that
then she’d be gay and that’s the only way it wouldn’t just be a “phase”;
the expectations sit in the muggy haze
and I just want her to kiss the whispers of my world
and have them heard
and understand that it isn’t so absurd
that she’s not a little “princess” waiting for her “prince”,
That you do not own me, can’t,
and I wince at the idea
that I am here to fit your fancy
because at school I was told my skirt had to be knee high
to avoid boys’ temptations and distractions;
where did my freedom of expression go?!


Born into a society where there’s a pink-blue binary
and although the conversation is turning
can’t you see we aren’t yet burning the barriers
blocking our view,
because you don’t yet see that you are me and I am you
and why should I put up with what I’m “supposed to do”?
as you bow down to those assumptions,
like the construction of paying for her platter because in the
past men mattered more and money was placed on their shoulders,
so even though we’re on a date
I will not accept your money,
but do you mind if I fuck you and the either/or dichotomy?


Yes- she may have played with dolls
but she will not sit cross legged for you
and she may like to wear her heels and head high
but that doesn’t mean that when she swings her hips
it’s her lips that are talking and for the taking
by the boy who caught her gaze
and whistled her way,
maybe thinking ‘we can connect’
but you forget that she is not your object,
or anyone else’s for that matter
but her very own, mind you she knows her body better than you
because, believe it or not, she explored her body too
though of course she was the only one because “that’s not a girl thing to do”.
And whatever sexuality she holds is to please others so
whistle away and she’ll be down on her knees
for you with her girlfriend because, in the end, she was only
kissing her lips to pull you in.
No let’s get this straight- although she was born in pink and so prejudice announced
that she would be a “boy magnet”,
Who dictates that that’s who she will attract?


Let’s rid our empty preconceived ideas
and fears.
Let’s kick away the mindless ball of words we aren’t aware we
control and roll away the shame and blame and segregation.
Let’s erase our restricted judgements of what it is
to “lose one’s virginity”
because who’s to say what level of intimacy
she feels adequate to break down those walls
(it doesn’t have to involve balls).
Let’s open up this cage where we sit stinking from the stench
and re-shape our ways and words to where
the air is clear
because prejudice is no longer speaking in our conversations
and room is made for the whispered words
to be heard instead of the absurd assumptions.
Let’s cross the border between me and you
and let go of what it is we are “supposed to do”
because she was born in pink and he was born in blue.


Painting is the Excursion of Nausicaa by Ethel Walker.


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