A must-read. Yes, everyone.
“The dude on Twitter says: “I was having sex with my girlfriend when she started her period, I dumped that bitch immediately.”
Dear nameless dummy on Twitter:
You’re the reason my daughter cried funeral tears when she started her period. The sudden grief all young girls feel after the matriculation from childhood,
And the induction into a reality that they don’t have to negotiate,
You and your disdain for what a woman’s body can do.
Herein begins an anatomy lesson infused with feminist politics
Because I hate you.
There is a thing called the uterus.
It sheds itself every 28 days or so, or in my case every 23 days,
I’ve always been a rule breaker.
That’s the anatomy part of it, I digress.
The feminist politic part, is that women know how to let things go,
How to let a dying thing leave the body,
How to become new, how to regenerate,
How to wax and wane, not unlike the moon and tides,
Both of which influence how you behave, I digress.
Women have vaginas that can speak to each other,
And by this I mean, when we’re with our friends, our sisters, our mothers,
Our menstrual cycles will actually sync the fuck up.
My own cervix is mad influential,
Everybody I love knows how to bleed with me.
Hold on to that, there’s a metaphor in it.
Hold on to that.
But when your mother carried you,
The ocean in her belly is what made you buoyant, made you possible.
You had it under your tongue when you burst through her skin,
Wet and panting from the heat of her body,
The body whose machinery you now mock on social media,
That body, wrapped you in everything that was miraculous about,
And then sung you lullabies laced in platelets,
Without which you wouldn’t have no Twitter account at all motherfucker.
See, it’s possible that we know the world better
Because of the blood that visits some of us.
It interrupts our favorite white skirts,
And shows up at dinner parties unannounced,
Blood will do that, period.
It will come when you are not prepared for it;
Blood does that, period.
Blood is the biggest siren, and we understand that blood misbehaves,
It does not wait for a hand signal, or a welcome sign above the door.
And when you deal in blood over and over again like we do,
When it keeps returning to you, well, that makes you a warrior.
And while all good generals know not to discuss battle plans with the enemy,
Let me say this to you, dummy on Twitter;
If there’s any balance in the universe at all,
You’re going to be blessed with daughters.
Etymologically, bless means to make bleed.
See, now it’s a lesson in linguistics.
In other words, blood speaks, that’s the message, stay with me.
See, your daughters will teach you what all men must one day come to know, That women, made of moonlight magic and macabre,
Will make you know the blood.
We’re going to get it all over the sheets and car seats,
We’re going to do that.
We’re going to introduce you to our insides, period
And if you are as unprepared as we sometimes are,
It will get all over you and leave a forever stain.
So to my daughter:
Should any fool mishandle that wild geography of your body,
How it rides a red running current like any good wolf or witch,
Well then just bleed, boo.
Get that blood a biblical name, something of stone and mortar.
Name it after Eve’s first rebellion in that garden,
Name it after the last little girl to have her genitals mutilated in Kinshasa,
That was this morning.
Give it as many syllables as there are unreported rape cases.
Name the blood something holy,
Something mighty, something unlanguageable,
Something in hieroglyphs,
Something that sounds like the end of the world.
Name it for the war between your legs,
And for the women who will not be nameless here.
Just bleed anyhow,
Spill your impossible scripture all over the good furniture.
Bleed and bleed and bleed on everything he loves,
~ Dominique Christina, ‘The Period Poem’
Art by Helen Claira Burt