Under your Wing by Jodie Rose McLoughlin

You kept her under your wing
like a protective bold eagle.
A caged bird
covered and concealed
from the ravenous eyes of predatory men.
No knowledge to be imparted
only chores
and more chores
The only thing to be celebrated
As she submits to you
whether she wants to or not.
Throw the man made rulebook at her
It leaves a bruise on her cheek
but that’s ok
because scarves cover most scars –
except the pain within her eyes.
Quite well
You’re doing so well.
As she raises your kids with the money you toss her
Throw it gleefully on the floor
like a chewed up bone
you’ve already slobbered on.
No income of her own
You’re such a good provider and Dad
and the bitch
ought to be more grateful.
If she has any thoughts of running from your arrangement –
she’s dead
Even once wed
women are still dirty, whorish, weak, unclean –
and those are just YOUR thoughts.
Spare the rod and spoil the wife
She has to learn her place.
As she hides her face and lowers her gaze
you smile with yellow teeth
Pillar of the community,
so well respected
It’s all about giving the right impression.
Loved and feared
you perform your duties
knowing full well that your reward is in place.
You await heaven’s embrace so self-assuredly
while she exists in hell.
She’s on survival autopilot whilst
man is the high-flyer, eagled eyed to spot transgressions
As decreed by gods and prophets alike….
But one day you left the key within her reach
and she escaped from her cage to seek knowledge.
One fine day,
soaring high
on the changing
she shot the eagle down
to hell

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