1). Only time I think about you is when I think of how I haven’t thought of you.

2). How is it that I miss you,

Without missing you?

Want you, without wanting you?

All I need to do is say no,

But how is one thing, a million things too?

Speaking to you through my notes is all I can ever do,

How could this ever be love when you’re not here too?

It’s more than a habit, less than an addict;

Somewhere in space,

Miles away from earth

We’re together and it doesn’t hurt.

Yes I’m over you,

But I could stay in this Space, here on Earth,

Being together, and keeping you out so it doesn’t hurt,

Just so I could keep you in here, this deep whole that never closed up.

When all goes wrong I think of you,

Because I know the dead don’t move,

And I don’t want to be alone –

So I carry on attaching myself to you.

You became my reflex,

And now I have to unlearn you.

You have to want too.

3). I believed in you,

And now I can’t believe in anything.

You did not break my heart,

You had my soul,

My mind in your palm.

You will pay for it, though,

With that loneliness that will never depart.

4). I’m backwards,

Trust the thoughts I shouldn’t –

And shun the ones I shouldn’t.

I shouldn’t, I shouldn’t,

This is why I have to pay a therapist

To show me the way.

I’m backwards,

Born forwards,

But something turned upside down in me

When she left me,

The one who was supposed to love me no matter what;

And now I can’t be loved no matter what,

How funny is that?

6). You sinned to hide your sin,

And that’s what a coward is.

I’m the life of the party,

But I’ve given so much.

You want me to bring you in,

But you’ve already taken so much.

Attention and lust,

Hot pants and snogs.

Soak up my light,

Trying to have fun,

Leave me alone if you love me –

That’s why I knew you lied when you said you loved me.

You just want me.

I don’t understand how love doesn’t come with that.

7). One day you’ll be a 100 miles away from the heartbreak,

So far,

You won’t feel it, ricochet,

And shake the ground,

It won’t ever go but that’s why we move on.

8). And I wish I could let you love me,

But all I feel is that hole, an emptiness,

When you’re human, and vulnerable.

All I feel is shame, and disgust,

When you look at me.

My Mumma broke my heart,

And I can’t find the pieces,

Or the pieces are just set in stone.

Maybe that’s why I’ve always let you hurt me,

So the lava will come

And somehow stone will glow.

You locked me away,

But forgot, when found, my freedom will shatter your

Imaginary walls, and my heart in one blow,

So I can build a new one, a new home.

9). You always said I was the stars,

And you the sun;

But you knew that was true didn’t you?

That when you rise,

I would fall,

Become invisible,

And let you burn my world.

Don’t forget where you came from,

You’ll forget where you belong.

10). It’s all done to silence you,

Keep you stuck in their treacle trap.

But, you never thought I’d grow a new part to me,

And slip right out your reach

⁃ keep the old me.

Fleeting Fights

And, it’s been a while,

Since I’ve heard your voice,

Pressed into keys and

Notes –

Refund the broken time,

Cha-ching,

Rinse your breath from my soul,

Wash the rest down the sink,

Chests hidden in

Boats of yours and mine stories to be told.

Red seas no longer are,

Golds and White entwine in what was a star,

It heals,

It heals;

breathe you out, into a forgotten jar,

Where time is made and sold

To the devil who told

The story of You and me.

Give what was to the dark.

It’s free,

It’s free,

The pleas heard to

Let it free,

Were heard.

And yet standing in between this space of ours and mine,

Of freedom and escape,

I still love you,

It is bizarre;

Love does not know the chime,

Of my grandfather,

And ceased though you are,

Forever you will stay,

At the bottom of my beating blood red heart.

Finalities

I think there is beauty everywhere,

In every line and crevice of the human face,

Crooked and straight.

Ultraviolets and golds

At the base

Of yours and mine’s stories to be told,

That we decorate,

With the souls of strangers laced

Into our heart rate,

Where they all live forever as bold,

as of the infinitive universes’ grace.

Milks and honeys,

Chocolate siennas and vanilla,

Night skies painted with big taupe eyes:

It’s everywhere you see,

Just hidden away

From vanity and what we preach.

What We Preach

“Single-sex education is better than mixed education, for it prepares young people for the future,” was the question I was confronted with for my English transactional writing exam.

I decided it was a conversation that shouldn’t just be held with my examiner.

Usually ignorance doesn’t provoke much but boredom for me. Though it wasn’t always like that. For about six months my eyes rolled at least two-hundred times a day at the ill informed, shallow and moronic comments of the boys in my year.

For example, “Oh, I read in the news today the bigger a woman’s ‘arse’, the more intelligent her children will be,’ answered with, ‘Oh God, can you imagine how stupid —-‘- kids will be?”

Or even worse, being asked at 8:30 in the morning, “Shouldn’t women get paid less naturally because they’re allowed maternity leave?”

So, rather than throwing chairs and arguing, I educated. I realised people are just a little more likely to listen, if you aren’t screaming and if you are prepared to listen too. It’s a conversation, and I want to take the feminist conversation out of the classroom and into the world.

But, seriously? Is it not obvious that if you go to a single-sex school, it really does mirror and prepare you for ‘real life’: or is being segregated from men that normalised?

As a 15 year old young woman who is already struggling with society’s conventions, I am at odds with the idea of single-sex schools. But why, you’re thinking, right? I bet you’re thinking if the majority of your problems are because of young men, why are you against the idea of single-sex schools? And that was the exact ignorance I fore-mentioned. The problem is not individual men; feminism isn’t a personal attack. It is an attack on society’s patriarchal constructs that uphold beliefs of the superiority of the male sex, and as a result oppresses women; especially women of colour, but that’s a separate conversation we need to have. And you’re also probably thinking, ‘why is a 15 year old even thinking along these lines?’ Probably because of the internalised misogyny I’ve had to deal with all my life from other people: the fear of walking alone, and not understanding the instinct to repeatedly look behind me; why I was never chosen when the teachers asked for someone ‘strong’ to carry the benches out of the assembly hall and the sexual objectification I experience every day, with no exception.

I repeat, before you get carried away, I do not hate men. Men are great, as are women. But I do hate the oppressive nature of society. One that our ancestors have endured for far too long.

It’s often said that girls and boys will do better at single sex schools because of maturing at different rates, learning in different ways, distractions and the different (stereotypical) traits girls and boys have. It’s not to be said that single sex education doesn’t want equality, but that equality for men and women simply isn’t the same. Mostly because of those different traits, both physical and emotional biology. Therefore, single sex schools are best fitted for a child’s needs.

I don’t agree.

I think using stereotypes and generalisations to understand how best to teach kids, is dangerous. Stereotypes in themselves are dangerous: they become a person’s only story, and – almost always – confines them to society’s expectations. Children shouldn’t be confined. Our capability to change and learn is incredible. We should be able to flourish in the environment best for ourselves. Tress only grow best where the soil suits them. And that’s not to say a child doesn’t have the capability to learn in any environment! That’s a skill needed throughout our entire lives but being young, that’s a lesson to be learned in the right environment.

You get the jist I’m against single-sex schools. Am I for co-educational schools though?

One day, I will be in my own trading office, surrounded by men employed by me, who are listening to me. Rather than being hidden away from their sexually objectifying eyes and fragile egos. And I think that’s the environment a co-educational school creates. It shouldn’t be women or men. It should be men and women. Opportunities should be based on talent and potential, rather than gender. I certainly don’t want to be employed because I’m a woman, especially if it’s just for good statistics. I want to be employed because I have the capability of doing the job. I want that same capability to transcend gender. Gender is such a confinement, if you think about it, as is any label. Or perhaps, gender wouldn’t be a confinement if those of power, did not abuse it…

Sometimes I can’t help but think a co-educational school is just as bad anyway. Does the dream of equality fool me? Does it fool you too? Are we, boys and girls, continuously indoctrinated by what other people think is right? Those people being the older generation, whom generally speaking, don’t like change. Is that why my skirt is so annoyingly long, to not ‘distract’ boys – as I’ve been told many times before (of course it’s my fault). Does that not negatively affect boys, just as much as it affects girls? Is that why it took our feminist group a battle to get trousers for girls? Is the hard task of being a teenager, being made even harder by our need to defy our environments in order to do what’s right? It’s uncomfortable to even think about, even scarier to think that this limited environment I work in, just like single-sex schools, is mirroring my future.

It is as simple as this. Children thrive and flourish in schools that offer opportunities, success and academic support. Shown by Alan Smithers and Pamela Robinson, who work at Buckingham University: “while there are some very good girls’ schools and boys’ schools, it does not look as though they are good because they are single sex.” [independentschoolparent.com]

Perhaps you will work aside talented young women in your school years, whilst I work aside talented young men. But it doesn’t matter, because both you and I know it will not define our future.

We will be working on a trading floor, men alike too. We will be at university, sitting next to educated men too. We will be a leading political figure, with men too.

Men and women are the future. Humans are wonderful. Go kick ass.

Men AND Women: The Future.