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Fantastic piece.

The man was a brilliant critic, and his hand on a student’s knee after everyone else had left the dinner party was a brilliant critique of her inability to raise objections or make a fuss or in any way disrupt the set piece in which she suddenly found herself.

I've been in this situation. I think most women have. That disgusting feeling of knowing a man is taking advantage of the situation and your inability to tell him to stop, because then everyone will look at you and wonder what's wrong with you, he's just being friendly, he doesn't mean anything by it, stop make such a big deal out of everything. And then feeling disgusted with yourself later because you didn't say anything and he got away with it and you know HE knows he got away with it.

Every time the man dates a woman he has to tell her how the previous woman was unhinged, unwell, unmade by his constant queries, demands, and assessments, and the new woman must nod along or she will not be the new woman any longer.

I think that's the first piece of poetry I've read to the end in a long time. Work of genius.

This was really beautiful, thank you for sharing. I get the impression she has specific men in mind, despite this being a largely universal experience, I would love to know what(who) informed this piece. I hope she is healing. This is not relegated to academia or publishing either, I saw her experiences filtered in corporate America 5 years ago, before the metoo movement.

Pretty sure Junot Diaz is one writer being specifically referenced.

Yeah, I know. It’s everywhere.

Damn...

This is incredible. It gave me the shivers. Now I'm off to get Rebecca Hazelton's books of poetry to read. Thank you for posting this.