“Short” By Leah Spaulding, A Poem About Empowering Women

“Short” By Leah Spaulding

Short…

Too short. Or too plain. Or you’re never gonna get a man looking like that.
Men like women who are pretty, who take care of themselves.
These are just snippets of the things I’ve heard.
The vapid words from people who don’t get it.
My entire life I’ve felt out of place
Because women should be dainty and paint their face
But I never did.
And women should be strong, of course!
But don’t lift too much weight
Or stray too far from the course
That society has set for you.
Society wants a “strong woman”
But not too strong though, that’s intimidating
Society wants a “good woman”
One who’ll stick to her chores without complaining
But how can she be degraded and still stand so tall
In a society that loves to watch her fall?
In a society that loves to pay her less
And never quite celebrates her success.
In a society that feeds off her insecurities
Forcing her to stress and fix her every impurity.
But don’t worry, I’m sure there’s some kind of cream or diet plan for that
Because she can’t be too bossy or too bitchy
But god forbid she’s a doormat
In short, society wants a woman who’s strong like a man
Yet submissive enough to understand
That her worth on this earth
Is dictated by a length and a girth that she doesn’t have.
What we don’t realize is that if we didn’t give a shit
About the beauty standards they push with grit
Then they would be powerless
And power is everything.
We need to come together to gather that power
In which every woman can bathe and shower
Empowering each other to stand together
Empowering each other to stay strong and weather
This storm that’s raging
This storm we must persevere through
For every woman is part of this boat
That must work together to keep afloat
So the next time you see a girl with short hair
Who doesn’t quite wear what you would wear
Instead of gawking and scoffing and trying to tear
Help uplift her.
We will not fall short.

Author Bio: Leah Spaulding is a 23 actor/musician from Jersey City, NJ. She got inspired to write poetry as a therapeutic way to help heal from trauma and also as a creative outlet for her more abstract pieces. She wants her poems to resonate with people and always tries to write from a place of utmost honesty. She hopes that she can help other people heal with her poetry. @leahspaulding

Leah Spaulding headshot 1

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