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Anxiety

I’ve always described it like
time moving too fast and too slow
all at once.
The other day,
it was heavy.
Heavy glass,
where no air could come in.
I was too small to exist,
but too large for my body.
You were windows,
massive windows
leading me through a hallway.
Through a narrow space
on either side,
you provided a pathway for me,
pulling me through the casement.
A relentless cover,
protecting, yet
setting me free.

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To Whom it May Concern

My boss told me he stares at my ass all day and it’s just a joke, lighten up. “Come on, I’m only kidding” he says. And it’s nothing, really. The comments and the stares. They are so small and meaningless; how dare I make mountains out of mole hills?

“Smile,” he commands. Because who would want to stare at a resting bitch face? I need to look pretty and what better way to make me smile than to order me to? No, he’s not threatening me. Because he smiles as he says it. He stops smiling when he tells me that men like their women “young and tight.” This is serious now. I need to remember biology. “Younger girls are just attracted to older men.”

Us women, we must love being told what to do. We must love being harassed at work. We fucking love it when you ask about our marriages and joke about them ending. We love it when you call us sweet cheeks. We fucking swoon over that shit. I am standing on my soapbox now- a mountain, if you will: tell me to smile one more time and I will cut your lips off to make it happen.

m.e. peters

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Amreekan Pakistani

I lay on the soft grass
sounds of rickshaws
the smell of sweet mangoes
laal dupatta tickling my face.
This is my home.
The sounds of the subway
the smell of gyros
and loud New York streets
kissing my feet as I walk.
This is my home.
if only the two merged
if only they weren’t seas apart.
Two separate worlds,
both calling
longing for me.
They’re both my homes
the ones that kiss my head
shape me, teach me, welcome me in.
Both are my home
but divided with a deep ocean
with ignorance, with politics.
Sometimes I wear a kurta
with jeans
somehow creating a world within me
where both live perfectly in harmony.
Other times I am forced to chose between the two.
Which one do I belong to more?
Sometimes I have to hide the Pakistani
In order to not be criminalized
to not be seen as other.
Sometimes I have to hide the American
to show I too understand,
to show I’m not whitewashed
and sometimes I just wish it wasn’t so complicated.

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Dear Dreams

Dear Dreams,
I hope you hear my calls
Hope won’t answer
Faith is nowhere to be found
and Doubt won’t leave me alone
Dear Dreams, you’re all I got left
I know it’s been a while since we last met,
but Sleep hasn’t visited me for a while
and I don’t have any other way to get to where you are
so I’m calling out to you

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Target Practice- Advisory: Strong Content

*Trigger warning: rape

 

 
I went out to get obliterated. I went out to forget. To not feel a thing. I went out to be me, for a moment. Or at least the me that I wanted to be. I didn’t go out looking for your hands, your smirk, your smile when it was all over. I didn’t go out searching for a mess. In between my thighs, in between your best friend’s sheets, in the middle of my marrow. A mess you left I could not scrub clean. Even though I scrubbed three times that day. A mess I could not walk off because I could barely walk. My thighs still trembling a day later from all the fight I gave. I did not go looking for you. But you were looking for me and there I was, your easiest target yet.

m.e. peters