I wonder now
what happens when we grow over
the time we planned into an unknown future
you lost your baby fat, angular and drawn
pinched from the hunger of war
the masculinity of certain girls
who can carry off strong chins in their twenties
male inheritance flaming in visage
lends them the strength to become hard
for the sons who were not present
it was girls tilled the earth
scraping their legacies furrowed with dirt
to inherit freedom outside mystique
where judgement lay omnipresent
how the worth of plain faced women belies
the fire in their belly
I didn’t want it enough
to leave behind the soil and its
deep sonorous calm
because I grew content
for some that’s poison
but the fevered mind
lusts for silence
she will paint her room yellow
climb behind wallpaper
rather than survive nearly
in a room of grinding egos
some of us just want to watch morning dew
transform into steam and rise thermally
evaporating pinches of magic
staring into the silhouetted trees
nursing sorrow like a sudden cold snap
kills the large plants in the garden
despite their deep roots
and look there!
the young tree you planted only last fall

0 Replies to “Girls tilled the earth”

    1. Right? I recall watching a show about this as a child, how the women really ‘found themselves’ during this time, freed from the restraints of femininity and social expectation and then upon the mens’s return they were expected to return to who they had been before, which was incredibly crushing, not to mention dealing with the PTSD of the surviving men who were in no fit shape for resuming marriage. I can only imagine how hard this was, it’s really incredible to consider and for those brief snatches the wonder of freedom.

        1. I’m ashamed to say I did not know this. I went out with a man who was an Iraqi Kurd for many years and yet knew little of the Iraqi and Iranian history aside the obvious westernized trivia. I did read a book last year on Jews in Iran but it didn’t talk about that, I must find a book to read on this, fortunately my library has a lot of out there topics so I should have success. Thanks for letting me know about that I really was ignorant. How awful that this happened.

          1. It was inevitable really. There is no place for women in the public place in Islamic society. Look at Palestine. They used to have spokeswomen for Palestinian rights. Now that they have turned to religion for help, the women have been airbrushed out.

          2. Well that’s true. I’m guilty of not having even read Reading Lolita in Teran or whatever it was called. I really should. As soon as anyone turns to religion for help, all is lost, in the sense that the religious dogma drowns out the common sense and surely the voice of the female which is one of many reasons I have an issue with organized religion. I’m glad you told me about this I really want to know more.

          3. I don’t even remember where I read about it. The Guardian maybe. Don’t get me on religion though. I’m officially declaring this a God-free blog.

          4. Do you know the publisher VIRAGO? I like them because the exclusively publish women’s work that was airbrushed out as you say, and some of the people they have found are fascinating. It is a bit anglo-centric of course but in recent years they have found some from more far-flung places such as India – I find the Indian writers on WP are some of the best – in English no less – such talent.

          5. I’ve read a lot of Virago books. They re-published several Irish writers who went from being household names to being dropped from publishers’lists and no one has been able to give a valid reason why.

          6. Exactly. I torture myself sometimes imaging what it would have been like had women been in charge and if many of the wars we had, would not have occurred. Hard to say, as women can surprise me with their stupidity too ๐Ÿ˜‰ but I would like to think the world would have been a better place though we’ll never know.

          7. The world would be a slower, less technologically advanced place, because most of the big breakthroughs in science and technology have been to do with war and weapons and expansion. We would probably have had better generalised medical care sooner though.

  1. Turning this around, I have known women, apparently incapable of practical tasks, suddenly find ability and talents after losing their husbands. And I think you know who is the practical one in my partnership with Jackie ๐Ÿ™‚

    1. ha ha ha! So true! I do know! Now you have me laughing! I have too – women who can even build extensions on their houses by themselves after the fact, quite incredible. Just shows at any age things can be done if we have the will.

          1. I’m probably a slack emailer too… I haven’t checked my email in months! (Hang head). Thank you my darling one… I’m doing ok thanks ๐Ÿ™‚ hope you are too? Your writing never ceases to amaze me x

  2. I’m trying to encourage (=*coerce*) nb to paint our now spare bedroom walls so I can do my thing in there. This morning I said perhaps I could paint it. His reply “Can you climb ladders?” No, I cannot! I had to admit defeat. In my house some things will have to remain man things ๐Ÿ™‚ Just sayin’ …..

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