Matthew Graham


As the dull softness of girls melts down
To the bright kernel of women,
There’s a tightness in their eyes
And an anger.
What the idiot world desires in them
Is what’s being lost to them now
By time and the business of being women.
And that slender power they had,
And barely understood as girls,
Has become the broken promise of advertising.
In the locker rooms of their athletic clubs
They eye each other frankly and see,
Beneath the marks of all they were asked to give,
The girls they should have been
Had they known then
The hardness they now know.

Meanwhile, their husbands, grown thick in necks
And waists, dream sadly of those girls
They thought they knew, and married
In their rushed and useless haste,
To not only be
Forever boys.