Wednesday, March 29, 2017

March 29, 2017 Poets United Midweek Motif/Just a Girl

Just a Girl

grow up in a world                   your opinion                            your ideas don’t matter

you’re just a girl                       your only value                        based on your appearance

better to look cute                    certainly best to be young         and not overweight

to age you don’t fair well          no need to take science            nor too much math

as in the yellow wall paper       writing will cause illness          what was a girl worth

grow up get married                 be a “good wife”                      and mother

learn to keep it to yourself        forget who you are                   or who you want to be

after all you are just a girl         someone’s wife                        someone’s mother

March 29, 2017          



  1. Annell, as I read your poem, I thought about, all of the educational stereotypes that teachers wrote about me, and my various learning disabilities. Sadly, many of them, are the same ones, that you wrote about, being a girl. In my case, I was told, not to take Russian (the language), at university, as I would fail the course. Instead, I pass it, with a "c-" average.

    Wish, I could say that things are changing, before our eyes, but I think, it will several more generations of children, before we are able to say, these were, "the bad old days."

  2. This is the story of so many of us who, thankfully, at some point figured out we had a life, and the right to be who we are, and who picked up our pen, or paintbrush, or walking shoes and started off on an incredible journey.

  3. Still when we want to insult a man or boy, as Therisa says, we say they are like a girl! "Just a girl"! I remember the vivid portrait of hysteria--women's dangerous reading in The Yellow Wallpaper--and I love the allusion to it in this poem. How can we help children everywhere feel they have value even especially as girls? That the nasty or limiting things people say are to prevent them from realizing their true power? Taking on a female role could be even better when chosen freely.

  4. ...and yet there were the Amelia Earharts, the Eleanor Roosevelts, the Sojourner Truths, the Elizabeth Cady Stantons, the Susan B. Anthonys who overcame. Evocative piece, Annell.

  5. I was lucky as in the high school I attended the girls were in majority and generally achieved better results than the boys so gender superiority was never a problem with me! (And they looked quite fearsome with hockey sticks in their hands).

  6. it's sad even today girls are treated like this everywhere and in my country you have to add one more thing: 'bear a SON'....

  7. I certainly recall those attitudes when I was growing up – not in my family, I'm glad to say! – but had hoped they might be less common now.

  8. Thank goodness the attitude toward women expressed in your poem is disappearing, albeit slowly.