The politic

Less nuanced than what meets the eye

Is just power

Dressed in glorified narratives of the dominators

Erasing the powerless with empty narratives

Did Israel ever mention the nation they colonized?

They wrote upon arrival, “a land with no people”

Did they ever explain to you in

Health class

That I have a phallus too?

It’s called the clitoris.  


And commenting on the color pallet

Monet’s influence

Will never be be sufficient

Or deep enough

To appreciate the struggle

I endured

To transform mold,


resurrect my pain into a work of art,

Because every stylistic decision

An artist makes has a backstory,

subconscious or not,

comes from the lense through which they

view this world

And is immediately politicized

In relationship to this world.


I learned as a teenager

It is difficult to be sex positive

Within the confines of rape culture.

How can I celebrate my sexuality,

Which to me is one of the most



And expressive

Aspects of myself,

When everyone I began to have sex with

Learned from porn?

When all my partner can think about

Is getting himself off,

When I am raped  

At 19,


And again at 21.

And sure

Maybe it was her choice

To sell her nude image

But that image is no longer hers,

Once it is taken from her,

And used by the male gaze


And experiencing my body

from the female gaze

Was one of the most


Experiences I’ve had yet,

Because she touched in ways

That not only recognized,

But crafted something

Beautiful and wholesome

out of my pain.


If you knew how many

beds I’ve cried on

With no one to wipe my tears

It was Audre Lorde who once said that

The term eroticism is synonymous to sex

In this culture,

But assuming it can only exist within sex,

Rids the erotic of its power

And meaning,

In reality it is much more:

“erotic connection functions as the open

and fearless underlining of my capacity for joy,

in the way my body stretches to music and opens into response,

harkening to its deepest rhythms so every level upon

which I sense also opens to the erotically satisfying

experience whether it is dancing,

building a bookcase, writing a poem, or examining an idea”

and lastly, making love as well.


As if my shame is build into their freedom

Keep your


And mouth shut.

Don’t interrupt.

Being raised as a “nice girl” is so


My “niceness” is a commodity

In this economy.

the easiest thing to

rip off.

What makes a profit.

By simultaneously enjoying



And abusing

All that’s feminine

But I never wanted to be nice.

I didn’t mean to be nice.

But I can’t stop.

I can’t stop the instinctive line of apologies

Everything about my expression becomes

Apologetic in nature.

Stepping back,

Making space for you,

Instinctively validating the “genuineness” of

your intentions.

Making more space for you.

A smile.

I’m sorry, but I don’t want to talk to you.

I’m sorry, I should have expected

What you wanted when you asked

Me out for drinks.

I’m sorry, I’m sure you didn’t mean it like that.

Well how am I supposed to say how

I feel and what I want

when I was never given the language?

From a young age,

I was never taught that I

could have an opinion,

that I could say no,

and that I had any other

value other than how much I

made others feel comfortable.


The worst pain I’ve felt

Wasn’t physical,

It was from not being heard.




It took me three fucking years,

To say they raped me,

Because the blame,


Suffocated my

Ability to recognize


how I experienced

and how I felt about

those nights,

and not what everyone else said.


It’s like my words

My movements

My behavior

Are appropriated from me,

Become something I did not

Intend them to be

And they are no longer mine

My “no”

Gets taken as, ‘try harder.’

We report rape

To get some damn


For our experience to be


But no court will

Ever be able validate it


when we live only within his discourse.  

And physical evidence,

All the rape kits done,

(that by the way sit in storage for years),

Isn’t there any value

In how it made her feel?

But her voice is not “evidence-based.”


I will not

Dismiss or

Minimize my feelings

To make you comfortable


Because I cannot exist

And not exist at the same time

Without a part of me breaking.


And with all the male scientists

That have studied the female body

And society’s obsession with

It, why are we so behind?

It seems that “female sexuality”

Is more about male sexuality,

And yes.

It makes a difference who is doing the research

There is no such thing as objectivity,

Even the biology textbook,

Genders the sperm and the egg.

Freud and the “adolescent clitoral orgasm,” 


And so on.

And what you get years after,

Are still women who don’t even know their own bodies,

Who don’t know its function,

How they orgasm,

Where their clitoris is before they touch it,

(even though every boy knows where his penis is),

I being one of them.

Who don’t know  

Their body’s

Extraordinary strength,

And its deep

And expansive potential.  


My orgasms aren’t linear

They’re circular.

And you’d know that,

If you did not colonize my body

And its sexuality.

And if we didn’t speak

About plays in terms




And “resolution”.

If only more literature

More plays

Were gynocentric

Because my rhythm

Doesn’t fit your template.

But just because it doesn’t fit your template,

Doesn’t mean it doesn’t exist.

Because I can have multiple


And I circle in and out

Of what I feel.

There is a part of me that will always be


Always be sad.

And I’m okay with that.

No life is linear,

no one’s is,

My goal is not

To get over my anger,

Or pain.

To move on,

To let go.

All I want is for my



And emotions

To get acquainted,

Get to know each other.

I want to experience myself for

Myself and not someone else,

and honor my wants and feelings.

I want to experience my sexuality

Within a whole new set of parameters.

Because I don’t want to live


And disconnected from myself

And my lovers.

I don’t want to keep living

Internalizing someone

Else’s wants and desires.


In Audre Lorde’s own words on the erotic,

“As women, we have come to distrust that

power which rises from our

deepest and nonrational knowledge.

We have been warned

against it all our lives by the male world,

which values this depth of feeling

enough to keep women around

in order to exercise it in the service of men,

but which fears this same depth too

much to examine the possibilities of it within themselves.”

Just as the courts,


and culture distrust

and fear the power

within our way of knowing.


Well I am not done distrusting and

Questioning questioning the

Fire that grows in my belly

From disgust,


And pain.

I am done sacrificing my


Erotic power and energies 

To those who only know

Only how to take.

And now I won’t accept anything less,

Other than the hands that know

How to



And make art from my pieces.

One thought on “Kayla

  1. Kayla,
    Your writing is *Powerful*, beautiful, and eloquently honest.
    What you’ve survived, in part or in different seemingly linear orders, I have as well.
    At my age, I would think this disgustingly abhorrent behavior would stop. It has not. It’s gotten worse; significantly.
    Still, I know I’ll survive and continue forward.
    Like a Phoenix from the ashes, “I shall rise”.
    Only those with whom I feel a genuine connection shall be permitted into My Sanctuary. Let alone My bed, or My body.
    Thank you for sharing your Powerful, resonating world with us.

    Liked by 2 people

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