Perlenmädchen: A Poem

He reserved my body when I was five.

It was a ceremony I had no knowledge of.

It is a tradition, supported by men and women alike.

They handed my body over to him.

I was a child, a little girl.

They said, have her, devour her, use her for your pleasure.

Get the most out of her.

I am a little girl.

I am not much older when his sex shreds mine to pieces.

To show me where I am in the food chain.

To exhaust his desires, he mounts me when he pleases, it’s his world,

My body, his landscape, and his skin scrapes over mine.

I have never been asked, I have never been educated.

It’s my responsibility to not get pregnant and if I do my child will be killed, it’s too late.

I need to lie down when I see him coming.

Never will he marry me.

I am an object of prostitution.

I absorb his paralysing thrusts and I have always been a child.

Never could I grow up under these circumstances.

My parents gave him consent over my body.

I’m forced to wear the heavy pearl necklaces that he puts on my neck and shoulders.

He stigmatises me as a child.

Of course he had always been older.

With his objects put on me in bright alarming colours, he marks his territory,

He signalises that I am his for a while, until he is done with my body.

There is a hut for his pleasures and my silence, my desecration.

They will take my sex and cut it, tear it apart, erase its existence, stitch it closely shut.

Where am I to go now, mother?

Whereto should I take my pain, my blood, the wounds you inflicted on my body?

What have you done to me, parents of mine?

Men of honour and values and tradition, if only I had known.

You all butchered me and wouldn’t let me heal.

I ache and I ache and I ache; what are my prospects now?

I feel like you smashed my heart with two rocks.

woman curled up in bed
Photo by Polina Zimmerman on



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