I remember the time when I saw somebody jacking off in the train
I felt disgusted and dirty, at the same time.
And for many days afterward, the image of that man masturbating would pop ip unexpectedly in my head.
And it would make me feel sick to my stomach.
Last night, my sister saw a man masturbating in the bus.
He was sitting in front of me.
And my sister told me she felt sick to her stomach.
We had our 7-year old niece with us.
I’m sure, if her parents had known,
They would never let Chloe commute again.
At least, not until she was old enough to fend for herself.
But even then…
My mom still calls me, worried as she is by predators in the night.
Of course, it doesn’t take a stranger to make me sick to my stomach.
My dad looking lecherously at my friend’s legs,
That makes me sick to my stomach.
Seeing Mexican women shine white men’s shoes at the Chrysler building makes me sick to my stomach.
Seeing my mom cry because my dad has gone to his other women makes me sick to my stomach
Seeing the women of Triumph cry because they’ve lost their jobs makes me sick to my stomach.
Hearing my friend cry because she can’t have a wedding like her straight sisters did
Hearing Lola Narcisa’s story of being a comfort woman,
Hearing Melissa’s story of torture,
Makes me sick.
Sick to my stomach of being just an object, spoils of war, a cunt, just breasts, being the other, of being silenced, of being thought stupid.
I am sick.
And I come to you, sisters, my kasamas, because you heal me.
I find your hand on my shoulder as I puke over the toilet bowl,
Your arm holding me up so I don’t fall.
Let me purge myself clean.
And fill myself instead with clean air, fresh water, sunlight, good hot gumbo, a hug, the sound of waves, sudden laughter.