POETRY.


FEARFUL WOMEN


Arms and the girl I sing - O rare

arms that are braceleted and white and bare


arms that were lovely Helen's, in whose name

Greek slaughtered Trojan.

Helen was to blame.



Scape-nanny call her; wars for turf

and profit don't sound glamorous enough.



Mythologize your women! None escape.


Europe was named from an act of bestial rape:


Eponymous girl on bull-back, he intent

on scattering sperm across a continent.



Old Zeus refused to take the rap.


It's not his name in big print on the map.



But let's go back to the beginning

when sinners didn't know that they were sinning.



He, one rib short: she lived to rue it

when Adam said to God, "She made me do it."


Eve learned that learning was a dangerous thing

for her: no end of trouble would it bring.



An educated woman is a danger.


Lock up your mate! Keep a submissive stranger


like Darby's Joan, content with church and Kinder,

not like that sainted Joan, burnt to a cinder.



Whether we wield a scepter or a mop

It's clear you fear that we may get on top.



And if we do -I say it without animus-

It's not from you we learned to be magnaminous.



By Carolyn Kizer


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POETRY.

POETRY.

POETRY.