The Centrefold of Womanhood

I scratch away the skin of my face.

I keep digging and digging, searching for

The cadaver within me that has been left there, exiled.

My tearing fingers are erasing

The surface. My face will never be good

Enough and I don’t know in whose eyes.


Scratching is the womanhood you taught me.

Violent nails marking their way into my skin.

And then you discard me, distance yourself

From what you have done and call me negative,

And you are devoured by your own ignorance.

I never gave birth to these emotions, they were

Formed alongside me. Inherited. Generations

Of women and men pecking out the substance of girls.


“Porträt einer Schauspielerin” by Hans Makart (1840-1884)

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