28 May 2016 – Sonnet
(The 1960s)

The sound bites worked quite well when I was young,
the undiluted anger in the face
and vitriolic venom on the tongue
assured me that my gender was disgraced,
no longer necessary, now unloved,
and no one in the world would morn our loss.
And so it was, so young, that I was shoved,
dismissed, rejected, just like litter tossed
beside life’s highway, taught to not defend,
to smile swhen mocked and slandered, not show hurt –
as if THAT were some patriarchal sin –
and never take the lead – and never flirt.
What chance that I was born here in a drought
of love – where even smiles were called in doubt!