Paper Thin [poem]

The only thing that’s criminal
Are all the words subliminal
That tell us all we’re minimal
With hardly worth at all.
That we belong at someone’s heels
Or kept inside a stall
To slowly be consumed
At someone’s beck and call.
I am no one’s sustenance
To be branded holds some resonance.
Boobs: sex. Lips: sex. Face: sex.
But God forbid I try
To be more than commodified
As if I’ve somehow exercised
One too many rights.
Fought too many fights.
Now that I can vote
My voice should be silent
On a piece of paper
On a marriage license
On a birth certificate
To quietly live out my fate
Until it’s time to read my will.
When I am gone and lived my fill
The best that I have left behind
Is not a quiet body, but a shouting mind.

Melisa Im

[Image: “Boston” protected by a Creative Commons license belonging to Matt Clare]