I saw the best girls of my generation, destroyed by sadness, starving, hysterical, naked,
dragging themselves through the macho streets at dawn with the word feminist on their finger-tips
like a ticking time bomb, looking for a way to live, looking for another psycho bitch to team up with,
tight-laced misshapen daughters burning for the ancient hellish connection to the phallic dynamo in the machinery of night,
who lobotomized and corseted and electrified and pained sat up mean-faced in the supernatural darkness of femaleness floating across the tops of cities contemplating their own ass,
who bared their breasts to Heaven and saw patriarchal demons staggering on tenement roofs illuminated,
who did not pass through universities with radiant cool eyes because they would have gone mad, like so many of Shakespeare's sisters, would have committed suicide,
who passed through universities with hot outraged eyes looking at all the male names and faces on the walls, being told not to complain,
being told please to abstain from the F-word because the student association ‘doesn’t want to exclude anyone’,
who instead of fellow intellectuals were given pathetic little boys marked to be the future leaders of the world, and became unbearably depressed by this,
who wrote LICK MY CLIT on windows in black lipstick and then licked each other’s clits and licked their boyfriend’s clit and licked the clit of anyone who had one boy girl and anyone else
and licked the clit of the world too, but never before asking do you want me to and hearing yes I really really do,
who emit hollow-eyed laughter when they realise they’ll be wrong no matter what they do,
who cried and laughed in bathroom stalls, lived and died in bathroom stalls, snorting cocaine and waxing ecstatically about each other’s on point eyeliner and skirts with pockets,
who at nine years old were called devils for going through puberty in Salem,
who at twelve years old were kidnapped in Chibok for committing the crime of education,
who at fourteen years old had archangel visions and heard divine voices and led the French army but were still burned at the stake,
who at fifteen years old were shot in the face on a school bus in Swat and looked death in the eye and still would not let go and still would not give up,
who on New Year's Eve in Germany felt a finger in every orifice and screamed and were told just keep them at arm's length, as though to be male is to be grenade, just waiting to explode in a woman's face,
who were told this grenade came from across the Mediterranean, as though there is no such thing as European rape, as though Europe herself was not named for a rape victim rebranded as a love story,
who were told sisterhood is powerful but only comes in one color,
who were told sisterhood is powerful but only comes vagina-shaped,
who were told sisterhood is powerful but not for the most powerless among us,
who raised themselves up and forgot that true liberation does not consist of just one shade of us at the top, who voted for the devil and forgot that untill all of us are free none of us are free
and babe, not even you are gonna be be free like this,
who were threatened with death for playing video games, murdered by Nice Guys when the friendzone became weaponized,
whose bodies were war zones, who walked the streets armed with keys for knives,
who listened continuously seventy hours from park to pad to bar to bed to Bellevue to museum to the Brooklyn Bridge,
who ducked their heads together and whispered in each other's ears the witchcraft needed to survive,
who fucked girls so they didn't have to be one,
who fucked girls and for once were white flags instead of gun, were recognition instead of how fast can you run,
who wanted to be both Jesus and Mary, both Marylou and Dean Moriarty, who wanted to hear Lolita's side of the story and for Humbert to just one time shut his pedophile mouth and let the girl talk,
who puked and puked and puked, starved and starved and starved, who turned their bodies inside out trying to exorcise themselves,
who went dizzy counting calories and masturbating silently,
who called themselves feminists and crusaded for paternity leave, called themselves feminists and barricaded for the right to the hijab because this has always been more than a blonde woman burning her bra,
who were ignored as soon as the conversational topic turned to politics, and hiccupped indignantly before starting a million parties of their own,
who wore shorts, low-cut shirts, high heels, no bra, nipple piercings, skirts so tight they couldn't sit, who wore nothing and still were not asking for it,
who were called whores as soon as they dared ask for it,
who sometimes asked for it loudly and with great urgency and then after being eaten out for approximately two and a half hours climaxed in the sun-kissed glorious spasm of 8,000 sensory nerve endings,
whose 4 billion multitudes could never be captured by one single poem,
whose 4 billion multitudes could never be captured by one single girl,
who saw the best boys of their generation destroyed by madness, raging, mutilated, unrapeable, not allowed to cry, not allowed to love anyone else let alone themselves,
who never hated their fathers, their brothers, their sons, boyfriends, husbands, friends, who never hated their brothers, never hated you, never hated their cellmates just because you got the sunny side of the room,
but who hated the prison,
who could not howl, who were not allowed to howl, not allowed to roar, whose howls were heard as shrieks because they were only allowed to be banshees, never lions, never wolves,
allowed to bleed over and over again but never talk about the blood, never call themselves warriors despite going to war every day,
who were not allowed to howl, but got up on stage and howled anyway.
Unfortunately, Chaos is as of yet unable to compensate their writers in full. But you can help us with that! Consider donating for this piece. All proceeds will go directly to the writer.
Helaas is Chaos nog niet zo groot dat ze al haar schrijvers volledig kan compenseren voor hun kunsten. Daarbij kan jij ons helpen: alle donaties gegeven via het onderstaande knop gaan direct naar de schrijver . Alvast bedankt!
Maxime Garcia van As is a poet and editor (Versal Journal) situated in Amsterdam. On march 5, during Chaos' book launch of A Room of One's Own, she performed the English version of "Shriek" before a crowd of 250 people. She absolutely slayed.
Hongerig naar meer? Maxime's poëzie is te volgen via haar nieuwsbrief.
Maxime Garcia van As is een dichter en redacteur (Versal Journal) gevestigd te Amsterdam. Op 5 maart, tijdens de launch van Een kamer voor jezelf, droeg ze haar Engelstalige gedicht "Shriek" voor ten overstaan van een 250-koppig publiek . She absolutely slayed.
Hungry for more? Maxime is the author of a monthly poetry newsletter you can sign up for here.