Female Gaze

In college, I took an aesthetic class
We read articles on the “male gaze”
And how it relates to sculpture

We investigated
The archetypal pose of a bashful young woman
Nude
No, naked
And turned away
A plea for modesty
Caught appearing unvirtuous
When perhaps all she was up to was
Wandering the family garden
Enjoying summer air on her breasts
Or
Trying on gowns before the party
And in comes malegaze
Uninvited
Judging
Odious

Sometimes, when I’m sitting alone in a bar
Or a café
I subject a man to my gaze
An unwelcomed disrobing of flannel shirt
And jeans
An inspection of beard and mustache
He runs his fingers through his hair
With both hands
Imitating high school movie dream boat
I wait for him to turn away
And wonder why he doesn’t

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