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My friend Lisa had a great opinion piece in the Times over the weekend that I just discovered this morning. How could I not try to find today’s poem in her words?
Today I was told not to look judgmental. Told this by a complete stranger on the subway platform. This, of course, is part and parcel of the “Smile!” nonsense that gets thrown at women. Feh.
“Smile! You look tired!”
(An erasure of Lisa Ko’s Times piece about quitting smiling.)
Women are often expected to smile,
make others comfortable.
Unnecessarily cheerful bluster,
Americans smile –
larger, toothier, intense –
a universal sign of the 20th century.
Smiling about a desire
for appeasement and artifice.
is unpredictable, uncertain, suspicious.
The appearance of happiness
takes away our right to our feelings.
It’s National Poetry Month! Every year, I choose a specific form and try…
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