Poem: Young Man

One of the reasons I decided to start a blog was that I wanted to share more of my creativity online in a new, fresh environment. I wanted to have a space where I could post my other creations (for example, my poetry) for posterity and possible appreciation.

I went back and forth on this whole posting my poems publicly online thing. Part of me was arguing that people wouldn’t care about what I have to say while the another part was all “you won’t know until you try.” Ultimately, all of me ended up just saying “screw it, I wanna do this and I will” – which is, honestly, how most of my creative projects start.

It’s an interesting process. Anyway.

Since March is Women’s Month, I wanted to share with you a poem I wrote about women (like myself) and our collective experience of fighting the patriarchy they were shamelessly born into. I wrote this as a response to our current political landscape which is, in all frankness, a war against women, children and the poor.

I performed this poem at Reverie 2, a spoken word event held by DLSU Writers’ Guild.

Young Man
Eri Santos

young man,
does the strength of my soul scare you?
does my independence intimidate you?
does your fragile ego pain you
so immensely that you must find every excuse
to belittle me?

young man,
does your fear of sensitivity
(or vulnerability) hurt you –
pierce splintering daggers so deep into your heart
that you resort to calling me names
or whore
depending on how short my skirt is?

young man,
does the boom in my voice deafen you?
does my light blind you?
does your self-control (or lack thereof) unnerve you
so badly that you think that my body
is not mine to control?
that you must elect your fellow
young men to decide and justify
the cost I must pay for
my own uterus?

“oh I’ve heard, the mindless beast
makes play he’s still a man.
how desperate are you,
that you call on such lost creatures
to defend you?”

young man,
you threaten me by waging war
you objectify my features
interrupt my thoughts
silence my success
erase every trace of me
all for what?

young man,
before you invalidate my questions
with #notallmen,
answer me this:
if at our core, we are both muscle, marrow and bone
and 70% water,
why do you treat me
my sisters
my girlfriends
our mothers so differently
from other young men
like you?

There we go. It’s a disappointing subject matter to write about but I think it’s important to write about these things creatively. To channel the feelings of anger and disappointment into fuel for art and literature is something we all have the power to do.

Do you have any poems that you enjoy? I’d love to get some recommendations. Please comment your favorites below. I’d appreciate it.

Hope you’re having a great day and I’ll see you on the next one.

Eri 🙂



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