Loose Woman by Sandra Cisneros

Loose Woman

They say I’m a beast.

And feast on it. When all along

I thought that’s what a woman was.

They say I’m a bitch.

Or witch. I’ve claimed

the same and never winced.

They say I’m a macha, hell on wheels,

viva-la-vulva, fire and brimstone,

man-hating, devastating,

boogey-woman lesbian.

Not necessarily,

but I like the compliment.

The mob arrives with stones and sticks

to maim and lame and do me in.

All the same, when I open my mouth,

they wobble like gin.

Diamonds and pearls

tumble from my tongue.

Or toads and serpents.

Depending on the mood I’m in.

I like the itch I provoke.

The rustle of rumor

like crinoline.

I am the woman of myth and bullshit.

(True. I authored some of it.)

I built my little house of ill repute.

Brick by brick. Labored,

loved and masoned it.

I live like so.

Heart as sail, ballast, rudder, bow.

Rowdy. Indulgent to excess.

My sin and success-

I think of me to gluttony.

By all accounts I am

a danger to society.

I’m Pancha Villa.

I break laws,

upset the natural order,

anguish the Pope and make fathers cry.

I am beyond the jaw of law.

I’m la desperada, most-wanted public enemy.

My happy picture grinning from the wall.

I strike terror among the men.

I can’t be bothered what they think.

¡Que se vayan a la ching chang chong!

For this, the cross, the calvary.

In other words, I’m anarchy.

I’m an aim-well,

shoot-sharp,

sharp-tongued,

sharp-thinking,

fast-speaking,

foot-loose,

loose-tongued,

let-loose,

woman-on-the-loose

loose woman.

Beware, honey.

I’m Bitch. Beast. Macha.

¡Wáchale!

Ping! Ping! Ping!

I break things.

By Sandra Cisneros





Photos sourced from Google

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