Read Poem: Lessons by Ana Paz

What do you want to be when you grow up?
A question we all hear when we are young
When I was growing up, I thought I wanted to be a cook
I would take pride in what my mother would do
close to a miracle
To feed all of us belly full with hardly and food
I will never take that skill for granted but at the time I didn’t think it was cool.

Because when I was growing up I want to be a footballer
When I first came to England the language I couldn’t speak
but I created my own with the ball and my feet
Eventually exceeding what was expected of me
The some of the boys
tried to pick on me

Don’t you know you just a girl?
Why don’t you
pick flowers
Play with a doll
Play with your hair
Play with that kitchen set
As a little girl I couldn’t comprehend
That you were belittling and pushing me down instead
But then again
being stubborn is one of my best traits
So I did learn this lesson a few times again
Like when I said I wanted to be the head of a company one day
You laughed at me
Or when I told you I wanted to aspire to play roles where I could show
I had brians
where I could be the superhero
not constantly subjected to the male gaze
you said that wouldn’t sale today
Well then I started falling victim to social contraints
Questioning my worth
And even my reasons
Can you stay on the phone
It’s late and dark
And I’m questioning which way to go home

Then, I question my appearance
Was it too revealing?
I didn’t realise that my clothes even if it was covering every single part of my body could seem provocative and I was giving out an image that I wanted it? See I had to learn to be wiser,
forced to think twice and apparently,
not bring it upon myself
I had to learn when it was black friday my body could be an item on a shelf.
You see
As a young girls
You’re taught
Not to question society
But to question yourself
And that’s when I realise that there’s no difference between my experience and mum always always having to be in the kitchen
But like I said
Being stubborn is one of my best traits
So I would observed and listen
Mother telling me how to season
But when a man told me it was where I should be
I never listened
Because I now know there are many ways to be imprisoned and I never knew messages could be hidden.
I wasn’t just cooking
I was learning resilance
Like waxing on and waxing off
Really you were feeding me lessons on how to wake up when enough is enough
Mother used to say in life there is no luck
So young lady what do you want to be when you grow up?
Now I know I just wanted
permisson to believe and dream
To be allowed to ask questions
To learn the right lessons
To be motivated to succeed
No matter what that success looks like
I wanted to excel
And I wanted my success to be as much yours as it is mine aswell.
I wasn’t trying to compete
But if I have to I will win
And it’s not because I want to it’s because I have to
It’s seems to be the only way that you will see my value
I’m not just a girl
I’m rooted and ground as a tree
Growing towards where the light may be
Able to give life beyond me
As beautiful and rare as a pearl and
As relentless and tough as my curls
I am not just a girl
I am a woman now
And whether it’s nature, nuture
Or both
I choose adapt but to never mould
Not even
In a mans world…

About poetryfest

Submit your Poetry to the Festival. Three Options: 1) To post. 2) To have performed by an actor 3) To be made into a film.
This entry was posted in 2018 Poetry, new poetry, poet, poetry, Poetry Festival, Uncategorized and tagged , . Bookmark the permalink.

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