School Uniform

School Uniform

  I didn’t like it
This seduction I held in my shoulders
The dip of my collar bones a trap to fall into
The story told by each roll of my skirt
As though my wit could be coiled away
My worth hidden by the fabric

I didn’t like it
The invitation offered by my crisp white shirt
An undone button beckoning to undo more
The permission given by my too-long jumper
As though hiding under stretchy fabric
Meant the same as teasing

I didn’t like it  
The man on the bus sat too close
Despite all the empty seats around us
I didn’t like it
The words said with a whistle
As though I wasn’t a child

No, I didn’t like it
I didn’t
Please believe me.
Elinor Austin

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