American Women This work has been published in the Teen Ink monthly print magazine.

March 2, 2014

we always sigh and shake our heads
at hijabs and long, black dresses
that hide the toes
of Middle Eastern women

we pity them and tsk tsk tsk
at their oppressive society
why are men so dominating? we ask
and thank the Lord that we are
American women

we are American women
with teenage daughters
who wake up and consciously decide
to wear five inches of denim
across their hips
and cotton fabric that bares their midriffs
even when it is sixty degrees outside

my American daughter knows that
the boys at school
the man who works at the gas station
the creepy teacher who flirts with female students
will stare at her body and widen their eyes

the boys at school text her and ask for photos
the gas station employee stares at her chest and whistles
the teacher pats her back and whispers that he likes her skirt
my American daughter smiles and says, thank you

but we are grateful that
our daughters
our granddaughters
our mothers
our grandmothers
are not forced to wear hijabs
who are we to judge?

This work has been published in the Teen Ink monthly print magazine. This piece has been published in Teen Ink’s monthly print magazine.






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This article has 3 comments. Post your own now!

a_marlys This work has been published in the Teen Ink monthly print magazine. said...
Feb. 2, 2015 at 5:48 pm
I get what you are trying to say here, but as a devout feminist myself, I have to say I find some aspects of this poem to be a little problematic. Instead of promoting equality in the social perception of the way women belonging to two different cultures tend to dress, you seem very critical of the "revealing" way some western women dress. The truth is, a woman can choose to express herself however she wants, and it doesn't mean she is any less worthy of respect. Also, the whole thing about olde... (more »)
 
Tytee_22baby said...
Mar. 20, 2014 at 10:22 pm
Interesting and true!
 
nomistoo This work has been published in the Teen Ink monthly print magazine. replied...
Mar. 30, 2014 at 1:03 pm
Thanks! I was going for ironic, too. I find the whole topic of feminism and self-expression very interesting.
 
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