The spoken word scene has been so alive and vibrant lately. In a world full of discrimination, emotional turmoil, and negativity, it proves to be an effective outlet for people to voice out their frustrations. It’s also satisfying to be able to relate to those people as they put your feelings into the right words.
Spoken word artists usually base their poems on the problems that they face in life. Many of those artists are women and they preach against fat-shaming, rape culture, and the fragile male ego. Here are just some of those women who take the words right out of our mouths.
This powerful piece by Imani Cezanne questions why masculinity questions femininity all the time. She reacts specifically to the men that have asked her why she wears heels when she’s already tall. She calls for the men out there who feel threatened whenever a woman is richer, more powerful, or even simply just taller than them to focus on themselves instead. She says, “You should love yourself enough to not let a woman in heels emasculate you.”
Trisha O’Bannon takes us on memory lane with her poem about growing up in an all-girls school. But she doesn’t dwell on the mass menstruation that occurred every month or the ghost stories of dead nuns and soldiers. With a sharp tongue that tells it as it is, Trisha shares how being in an all-girls school made her love her fellow women and how she realized the power of the vagina.
Staceyann Chin tackles rape culture, racial discrimination, sexuality and gender issues all in less than four minutes. But the essential message is, as she so eloquently puts, “I come in too many flavors for one f*cking spoon.” A woman’s―no a person’s―identity cannot be compartmentalized into categories and to do so leads to the problems earlier mentioned.
There is definitely no shortage of hugot poems these days but Dzeli Del Mundo talks about a different type of hugot: “Ang hugot ng kababaihan.” Speaking like she’s on the pulpit for Sunday mass, she calls out those perverted men who dare harass women on the street and say that they deserve it.
It can be hard for a woman who isn’t comfortable in her own body to have great sex. Certain touches can make her feel uncomfortable and insecure, such as how rubbing her belly can make her feel like Buddha or Winnie the Pooh. Yesika Salgado uses her humor and anger to call men to treat fat women as regular women; to see past their bellies and accept them as a whole.
Patti Ramos bases her poem on feminist canon “Your Gaze Hits the Side of My Face” by Barbara Kruger and juxtaposes it with the Greek myth of Pygmalion and Galatea. She speaks of how the male gaze creates a flat and simply physical image of a woman that excludes her humanity. She acts out how Pygmalion created Galatea as his lover only to destroy her when she wants to be something more. Patti warns us of the objectification that comes with admiration, especially if we carve our expectations of that person into stone.
Photo courtesy of Huffington Post
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