by Sarah Lilley
Why are girls beautiful until they’re stronger than you?
Ashamed to be around her
Once she’s able to do it better than you do
You refuse to be called anything less than sir
Since her IQ is higher than the mountain
That you’re forcing her to climb
In order to be an overflowing fountain
That you make her struggle for every dime
It’s nothing short of cruelty
Your sympathy is less than treacle
It fails to see her beauty
Because she is less than equal
And the path ahead is rough
But she is enough
This poem is by author Sarah Lilley, addressing the growing case against the enforcement of gender roles. The author sends a clear message that she does not agree with the stereotypes that are placed upon women to submit to men as the more dominant gender.
The poem is written in the form of a sonnet (abab cdcd efef gg) to create a rhyme scheme that fits her poem. The poem’s tone is very judging, almost challenging the reader to contradict the idea. To prove that what she’s stating is wrong. In line 10 it states “your sympathy is less than treacle” meaning that unless you, the reader, make a stand for equality among genders your sympathy will not make a difference.
A metaphor is used in lines 5-6 comparing the woman’s IQ to a mountain that she’s being forced to climb. This means that society has placed many obstacles in front of her goals that she must overcome before moving forward, like a mountain for instance. She must “climb” a difficult mountain of social hierarchy before she’s able to reach her goals as a woman. No matter how smart she may be, it does not matter to people who believe there’s a man just as capable.
The theme of the poem is very feminist. It addresses the underlying problems that our society has placed on the backs of women to carry. It’s made it that much more difficult to get a woman to the same level as a man in the work force because “in order to be an overflowing fountain you make her struggle for every dime”(line 8).
Women are not able to reach their full potential unless they are treated with the same respect as men.