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Innocent Until Proven Female

Poem by Rebecca Took // Photograph by Alina Autumn

Poem by Rebecca Took // Photograph by Alina Autumn

The trial begins at birth.

Checked, legs spread. Examined.

Mother and babe same violation.

‘Female sexuality’ is meant to be

an untruth, a misuse of our fertility;

masquerading as virility.

Lying female nude. We’re rude

if we voice an opinion; too often

our thoughts are met with derision.

Body hair and blood ‘down there’

mocked, as if our natures were

our own decisions.

We’re told to shut up, but

when we do, we’re stuck up.

Born performers, our emotions

Are performance for an audience

that believes the world revolves

around their axis.

To cry would be heinous,

be devious. We’re taught

to tighten and taughten

Any wobbles symptoms of hysteria.

We’re the witches that escaped

the burnings, drownings.

But relentlessly, we float.

Alina Autumn

Alina Autumn is a 23-year-old photographer from Russia. Follow her photography on her Instagram and Flickr.

Rebecca Took

Rebecca Took is a 20-year-old writer, reader and bookseller based in Birmingham, UK, having currently paused a BA in English Literature & Language at Oxford University. Ex-ballet dancer, she is especially interested in our self-destructive subscription to societal body ideals. Take a look at her blog.

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