Saturday, 10 November 2018

Miss America 2019

by Jeannie E. Roberts

Some things take time, a long time. But if we’re patient,
maybe they’ll happen in our lifetime.

After ninety-seven years of American females parading
their bodies across a stage, it’s happened: #ByeByeBikini.

Hello, Change-Into-Something-More-Relevant Category –
like showcasing one’s mind, goals, and talent.

The era of ogling women, objectifying them, is falling
by the wayside, and none too soon.

In the mid-80s, I was hired as a fur coat model.
The producer wanted décolletage. In a kind and respectful

manner, I asked the man, how is showing cleavage
pertinent to selling coats? Perturbed with my question,

he let me keep the job, though my inquiry ended any future
bookings. We’ve entered a new age, one where women

are speaking up, finding their voices, becoming
what they wish to be without having to expose their body

parts to achieve it. Some things take time, a long time.
But if we’re patient, maybe they’ll happen in our lifetime,

or for the next generation, because you spoke up, were one
of the courageous ones.

* * * * *

Jeannie E. Roberts has authored four poetry collections, including The Wingspan of Things (Dancing Girl Press, 2017), Romp and Ceremony (Finishing Line Press, 2017), Beyond Bulrush (Lit Fest Press, 2015), and Nature of it All (Finishing Line Press, 2013). She is also the author and illustrator of Rhyme the Roost! A Collection of Poems and Paintings for Children (forthcoming from Daffydowndilly Press, an imprint of Kelsay Books, 2019) as well as Let's Make Faces!a children's book dedicated to her son (author-published, 2009). She is Poetry Editor of the online literary magazine Halfway Down the Stairs and a member of the Wisconsin Fellowship of Poets.

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