It was pink and blue that didn’t make purple

Blue pushing pink out of the picture frame

They say that behind every successful man is a strong woman

The reason woman is strong is woman fought; woman clawed; woman screamed

She touched fire and didn’t get burned, swam without knowledge and refused to drown

Each time its head of devil’s horns roared, it was a shove in the direction of gourmet picket fences

Each time woman came with armor wrought in salt tears and intuition

Each tear that dropped from her eye filled the cup of the successful man when he grew thirsty; his eyes never felt the sting of salt water

She sat parched, giving man the drink she needed

Her tongue turned to sandpaper scraping her gums, the blood the only liquid to wet her lips split with want and need

It looked like desperation when she turned her back

It looked like an empty cage she’d filed down her nails to make an opening just big enough to squeeze her body through

She molded herself to fit through jagged teeth and poison fangs

She tore skirts to make bandages with which she tended her wounds

Catcalls bounced off her skin, coal turned to diamonds as they fell – little pieces of ignorance she wore around her neck