introduction to womanhood

young girls walk to the bus stop   they have a whooping tablespoon   of innocence  in their
pocket. waiting on the curb by the fresh, dewy grass an old man creeps up brushing past
their skirts, giggling they feel bad for him. young girls listen to what mama tells them.  their
skirts are trimmed just above the knee,  sneakers shined and white.    after school, young girls
ride their bikes to the corner store.  they crave some Arizona’s  gum potato chips and
lipstick.   the man at the counter asks   why they’re by themselves.   they hadn’t noticed. they
thought they were traveling in a pack.    confused, the five young girls   reached into their
pockets   digging past the innocence to reach for their coins   another man standing in line
behind them laughs   “lipstick? sheesh. how old are y’all?” he shakes his head. “I never
want to have a daughter   ”the cashier laughs,   winking at the girls as they hand him their
cash.    young girls ride their bikes home   bellies full of iced tea   lips coated in pink   horns
honk as they pass intersections —  they begin to notice.    —introduction to womanhood


Jean-Marie Bub is a New-York based artist, self-made publisher, and acclaimed author. As the founder and CEO of Wide Eyes Publishing, Jean’s mission is to amplify marginalized voices belonging to local and international artists. Jean is also the co-founder of @communityofpoetry, a platform and safe space dedicated to connecting, showcasing and discovering poets worldwide. Her work has been featured in publications such as Pussy Magic, ‘Reclaim: An Anthology of Women’s Poetry,’ and Affinity Magazine. Jean is forever cooking up new ideas and projects, frequently collaborating and ‘raising hell’ with other exceptional humans. In her (very little) spare time, she enjoys design, architecture, painting, and bragging about being a Capricorn. Jean has two published books and is compiling a third.

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