While all the young boys
Talked about fiddling with themselves,
We could be branded as a durty slut
If we openly admitted to it.
Or made feel totally ashamed
You never even tried
To do it yourself.
We were told to
Keep our legs closed
Or boys wouldn’t respect us.
That’s probably why we
We have so little for them now.
It was all about the boys really.
We were to police them
To tell them no as if we didn’t want it too
To tell them where our eyes were
And tell them when to use a johnny
Because they wouldn’t if we didn’t.
We are told what to wear
So men won’t leer at us
And if we don’t adhere to the strict dress code
We were asking for it.
We can’t wear thongs under our clothes
Because it would give them the wrong idea
Even before they see it.
We were given rules
Don’t be a slut
But you need sexual experience.
Don’t be a prude,
Or dress like an aul wan.
We are intended to be both
Virginal and sexual
And put clothes and makeup
For the attention of men.
We are to always be on alert to ward men off.
This is the self-serving duplicity
Of the patriarchy.
An ‘aul wan’ is an older woman, a sometimes derogatory term from Dublin.