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Kept Out
Ally Malinenko
Writer of the Month

We are the easy targets
to the men who hide behind
the thin veil of life
the men in Washington
who pretend that they care.
They do not want abortions
but they do not want us to have
birth control either.
What are our options, men?
What can we do?
Everywhere I go
I hear that they should
change the term to pro-fetus
because they don’t care about
the babies or life
and I want to scream,
it was never about babies.
Or fetuses. Or life.
Or parenting.
It was about woman.
About controlling woman
because when we do not have
control over our bodies
we do not go to graduate school
we do not run for office
we do not become the CEO.
When we do not have control
over our own bodies
we are sicker
less educated
kept down
kept in our place
kept out.
And that is the hard work
that then men in Washington do
when they bow to the patriarchy.

Ally Malinenko is the author of the poetry books The Wanting Bone, How To Be An American and Better Luck Next Year as well as the novel This Is Sarah.