The Back Seat

Location

Sheltered.
I had no choice
In the high school I attended
I am Catholic;
Therefore, to a Catholic Ladies' school
I shall go.

Do not mistake my words
And assume I am ungrateful.
An envied education I possess.
Privileged.

 But with a privileged, religious education
Comes a price.

Born Catholic.
Raised Catholic.
Taught Catholic.
But in secret I question.

Why should women born to love other women
And men born to love other men
Be refused the bonds given by marriage?
Who are you, teacher, to tell me that all sex outside marriage
Is without love?
Who ARE you-
To tell me-
That a marriage
Not under an ecclesiastical steeple
Is not a marriage at all?

If my future husband were to deceive me,
Multiple times
Who are you to say
A divorce is against the Will of God?
Who are you to say
You know the Will of God?

My sister
No older than fourteen
Came home one day with news.
Her Religion teacher
Stated that to
Make yourself look beautiful-
Dress well,
Makeup-
Is a sin.

Did God not say
Your body is a temple
To be cared for?

Every one of you
Seem to confuse
Your own feelings
With "God's" feelings.

My problem is not with your feelings,
For you are as entitled to those
As well I am
To mine.

But the fact,
That I must question in secret
And not in the classroom
For fear of
A lower grade
For fear of
Judging stares
For fear of
Your disapproval
Disgusts me.

For what good
Is this Catholic education
If I cannot explore,
Cannot question
The Faith truly?

So days go bye,
Another class I take the back seat
And drown out your
Unwaivering words.

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