Equality is a right, not a rarity
To the boy who said I should be more ladylike:
I will not cross my legs or twirl my hair
around my finger because it makes
I will not bat my eyelashes at you
when you hold the door open for me
and I will not bat my eyelashes at you
when you don’t.
I will not wait for your text messages every night
as if I need your written validation
for my existence.
I will not sit back and laugh at jokes that I
don’t find funny because I can make a room
roar with laughter in seconds flat.
To the boy who said I’m “smart for a girl”:
I will not stop reading book after book
until I’m sure my knowledge can wipe you
off your feet.
I will not feel guilty when I correct your grammar
or point out when you have misspoken.
I will not bow down to you because your father
is a successful businessman and I will not
let you leave until you hear about my mother
who is a profound bio-chemist.
I will not stop using words that confuse you
and I will not stop discussing politics or
the woes of capitalism because my female opinions
make you ‘uncomfortable’.
To the boy who said he hated my body:
I will not spend extra hours at the gym
to keep you from seeing my thighs jiggle
and I will not eat food fit for birds
to ensure you can fit your hand between my thighs.
I will not stop wearing that skin tight dress that
makes my ass look out of this world and I
certainly will not break your gaze when
you evaluate my worth.
I will not stop applying winged eyeliner or bright
red lipstick because I’m not here to look
like your man-made masterpiece.
I will not be a product of your temptation.
To the boy who sees me as an equal:
I will not praise you as if you are a rare species
nor will I boast that you are one of a kind.
I will not drunkenly utter that “I’ve finally got one!”
to my girlfriends over wine
because a boy with a level head shouldn’t be
impossible to find.
I will not pin you up next to my trophies
or diplomas as if you are some sort of accomplishment.
I will not degrade you to what we have been degraded
to all along.
I will defend the girls who are told they are not ladylike
I will protect the girls who are told they are too smart
I will support the girls who are told they should fix their bodies
I will fight for the girls who you tell are not good enough
and I will praise the girls who simply do not care.
Equality is a right, not a rarity.
By Kimberly Siehl
My name is Kimberly Siehl and I’m a 20 year old student at The College of New Jersey studying clinical psychology and spanish. I love writing, singing, dogs, and good food.