Telegrams from the 1970s by Melissa Jacob

I am not a silent poet

BARBIES LINE UP IN A ROW STOP KEN SCORES THEM OUT OF TEN STOP HE LIKES THEIR LEGS STOP HE LIKES THEIR TITS STOP WHICH ONE OF THEM IS GOING TO WIN?

It was the heyday
of Miss World and Girl’s World

women were educated
from the get go
to go get a man
bag yourself a husband
juggle double standards

be the debutant
be the sweetheart
be that plastic dolly
with a university degree
and a double D up top

smash glass ceilings
fight for equal pay
try to break the mould
but first and foremost
be a mother and a home-maker

and in this girl’s world
it was essential to remember
that He’s in charge

CHILDREN ARE MESSY STOP FAR TOO LOUD STOP WHEN DADDY IS DRUNK DON’T ANSWER BACK STOP DON’T MAKE A SOUND

Blackbirds pull worms
out of his head
in the blue light

he stumbles…

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