This is unpleasant:
the mere presence of a penis
within ten feet of me.
If I don’t want it there, it makes me nervous.

Hyperaware with a shot of courage,
one foot on the ground and ready to run:
this is what it means to be a woman.
Never inconspicuous when I want to be,
Never relaxed and always alert.

Men take up more space than they realize.
(so much space)
It encroaches on mine.
It makes me shrink into myself,
because that is the only way I can think of to protect myself,
because any man, anywhere, could be a threat.

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