women's rights

At the age of twelve, after the ceremonial blood bath, my mother sat me down and told me that I would have to be a women. 
A women. 
There was rules to the name. 
To be a women you must grow your hair. 
To be a women flowers must grow from your lungs. 
You must understand the rules of the gender, for you no longer run with a child’s heart. 
Never go out at night. 
Do not speak to men twice your age.
Also the guidelines that meant behind the walls, 
Sweep, mop and shine.
Cook, clean and care. 
Always attentive, always aware. 
Do not speak unless spoken to, as if women should be seen and not heard. 
You’re not really a women if you cannot bare a child, my mother would say, as she would add on. 
Prayer must run throughout your name. 
Tame your hair, lose some weight. “ men don’t want to marry you if you’re overweight”
Satisfy your man, 
Physically, emotionally, and sexually. 
As if all those rules apply to me and only me. 
Thin, sharp and would comply. 
The list went on throughout the years. 
I finally looked at the women of my life,
Dark circles ringed hiding behind their powered face. 
Smiles faded. 
Husbands rage hanging over their eyes. 
I did not want to be the women they spoke of, 
Naked, alone, and traumatized.

This poem is about: 
My community

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