Tag Archives: cultural representations of female beauty

Poetry: Burdens

Already my daughter’s looks
are something to bear.
Gold hair heavy
on her small shoulders.
Eyes big as burdens.

She can’t escape
people looking at her,
so lets bangs grow
over her face
like thick curtains
almost closed.

Once, on the street,
a man touched
the glowing tip
of his cigarette
right to the center
of her forehead.

A crazy man, you say.
But I know
it was beauty
leaving its hot kiss.

-Francesca Bell, Blue Lyra Review

The Body

“I interviewed a young anthropologist working with women in Mali, a country in Africa where women go around with bare breasts. They’re always feeding their babies. And when she told them that in our culture men are fascinated with breasts there was an instant of shock. The women burst out laughing. They laughed so hard, they fell on the floor. They said, “You mean, men act like babies?””
— Carolyn Latteier, Breasts, the women’s perspective on an American obsession

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