My Dearest Gertrude:

You will be sorry, and surprised, and puzzled, to hear what a queer illness I have had ever since you went. I sent for the doctor, and said, “Give me some medicine. for I’m tired.” He said, “Nonsense and stuff! You don’t want medicine: go to bed!”

I said, “No; it isn’t the sort of tiredness that wants bed. I’m tired in the face.” He looked a little grave, and said, “Oh, it’s your nose that’s tired: a person often talks too much when he thinks he knows a
great deal.” I said, “No, it isn’t the nose. Perhaps it’s the hair.” Then he looked rather grave, and said, “Now I understand: you’ve been playing too many hairs on the pianoforte.”

"No, indeed I haven’t!" I said, "and it isn’t exactly the hair: it’s more about the nose and chin." Then he looked a good deal graver, and said, "Have you been walking much on your chin lately?" I said, "No." "Well!" he said, "it puzzles me very much.

Do you think it’s in the lips?” “Of course!” I said. “That’s exactly what it is!”

Then he looked very grave indeed, and said, “I think you must have been giving too many kisses.” “Well,” I said, “I did give one kiss to a baby child, a little friend of mine.”

"Think again," he said; "are you sure it was only one?" I thought again, and said, "Perhaps it was eleven times." Then the doctor said, "You must not give her any more till your lips are quite rested
again.” “But what am I to do?” I said, “because you see, I owe her a hundred and eighty-two more.” Then he looked so grave that tears ran down his cheeks, and he said, “You may send them to her in a box.”

Then I remembered a little box that I once bought at Dover, and thought I would someday give it to some little girl or other. So I have packed them all in it very carefully. Tell me if they come safe or if any are lost on the way.”

Lewis Carroll, Oxford, October 28, 1876 (via man-of-prose)
Some things were worth the dance with danger.
Nalini Singh (via elige)

“But she became Gabby’s friend in that way that can happen, because the girl with the cool boots always finds the girl with the occasional slash of pink in her hair. The two of them like a pair of exotic birds dipping over the school’s water fountains—you knew they would find each other.”
—Megan Abbott, The Fever


“But she became Gabby’s friend in that way that can happen, because the girl with the cool boots always finds the girl with the occasional slash of pink in her hair. The two of them like a pair of exotic birds dipping over the school’s water fountains—you knew they would find each other.”

—Megan Abbott, The Fever


And I understand. I understand why people hold hands: I’d always thought it was about possessiveness, saying ‘This is mine’. But it’s about maintaining contact. It is about speaking without words. It is about I want you with me and don’t go.
She Was Always Holding My Hand (via itakeitalltoheart)
Sometimes you make choices in life and sometimes choices make you.
If I Stay (via vanilla-and-twilight)
Perfume’s ephemerality is its greatest appeal, the same way secrets can only exist if there is a listener. If right on our bodies, it is all we want to bury ourselves in. If on the right body, all perfume is sex, and we dig into the pleasure with our nails.

Tracy Wan in "The Secrets of Secretions" for Adult

Most people who know me permanently know that I am fascinated by perfumes, by bodily odors and the ability to mask or transform them in general.

When I was in 6th grade, I hated my body so much that I avoided showering as much as possible. Daily and intimate proximity to my naked limbs made me uncomfortable and angry. There were other things wrong as well, but like most people, I took it out on myself by refusing to acknowledge what was there. 

It was not until an old friend and classmate refused to sit next to me on the last day of school because “of my weird stench” that I finally recognized what was happening. I had lost a lot of friends and grew a lot of inches. I was 11 years old and nearly the same height and size I am now. I was womanly when I didn’t want to be and was angry that the world saw me as that when I so desperately wanted to feel like any other kid around me. 

The top drawer of my sister’s underwear drawer was filled with all of the lotions and body sprays from Bath and Body Works and Victoria’s Secret she purchased on shopping trips with friends. Because she was in high school, she left for school at 7:30 and I had an hour alone in our house before my classes began. I used to test every scent on my skin, sometimes testing them twice in one morning: before a shower and after. I was obsessed with the differences from a clean body and a settled one. 

Other girls were obsessed with clothes. I was obsessed with scents. In my mind, I could transform myself into someone else, someone better, with a spritz. This was also something I could control. I never wore makeup because my skin was so bad and I loathed clothes shopping because my tall, muscular limbs couldn’t fit into the teen girl sizes of my peers. But scents were mine to own and control, even if they weren’t technically mine at all.

My first perfume was Burberry Touch purchased in a Marshall’s in North Riverside. It was my sophomore year of high school. My sister started college and took with her the myriad of scents she liked to hoard but rarely used. I had to define myself all over again and I liked the strange pungency of the scent, despite it’s potent mix of florals and fruits.

Most girls wore Dream Angels Heavenly by Victoria’s Secret. But Touch was an act of rebellion on my part, perhaps my first ever. As I began to own my scents, I began to own other parts of myself that felt out of grasp: my style, my hair, and most importantly, my body itself. 

Later in high school and college, I stood firm with one scent. If this was my time of self-discovery then I needed a singular scent to define it. My vanity now is covered in bottles little and small. Perfume and scents have moved from definition to playfulness, to mood, to curiosity. 

Bvlgari’s Jasmine Noir is a tried and true standby. I wore it a lot at 23 when I first moved into my apartment alone. Now I keep it there just in case. I also love Dior’s Addict and Addict 2 Life. See by Chloe makes the winters bearable. Elizabeth and James’ Nirvana White is just a touch too strong for the day time, which is why I wear it every day. I’m enjoying pushing little boundaries. 

I own thirteen different scents now. They are not impulse purchases. I think a lot of scent and what it means and how it changes and compliments who we are. I wrap myself in scents as I do clothes and as I do feelings. They can at times feel like the only tried and true lover, one that knows just how to kiss the skin. I don’t want it to let go. 

(via britticisms)
Everyone has a sadistic streak. Nothing brings it out better than the knowledge that you have someone completely at your mercy.
Bitter Moon (via imageramblings)

It’s Monday. I’m going home at 6pm and a middle aged man and a teenage boy are the only people left on the bus with me. I consider the fact that because the driver is also a man I am the only person left on the bus with the correct genetic makeup for boobs. I’m automatically scared, scared because of my own anatomy. I wonder how old I was when I realized that my own body was going to be the cause of the constant anxiety and fear I feel in situations like this. I get off at the last stop and the older man smiles at me while following me up the street. His smile drips, drips, drips and my heart is pounding, pounding, pounding. He turns off down another road, but I run the rest of the way home.

Not all men.

I’m at home on a Tuesday, beginning to plan the travels I want to go on next year. I dream of wandering the streets and meeting strangers. I just can’t wait to escape the city I’ve lived in for 17 long years. But… my mum is hesitant. She’s forever worried about the danger that being a young girl traveling alone can bring. I’ll be alone and she’s scared. Surely I’m invincible. I feel invincible. But I know, I know this danger is real and I can’t help but think to myself, if I feel unsafe in my own city, how am i going to feel in a strange place with strange men who don’t speak the same language as me? If I was my brother planning this, I would probably just be wondering if European girls are going to be hot.

Not all men.

Wednesday is a beautiful sunny day but I’ve always been told that I don’t have a “nice enough body” to wear a bikini on the beach. Ever since I was 6 years old I’ve thought that having tummy fat was ugly. That skin that doesn’t have a perfectly golden glow is undesirable. I amble to a clear patch of sand in my one piece and I can feel pairs of eyes latching onto me. Hairy men in speedos who I don’t look twice at eat into my body with their stares. I’m a piece of meat. I am a piece of meat? I am here for their amusement. Please don’t let me be eaten alive.

Not all men.

Thursday night two friends and I are walking to our god damn school dance when we hear “Jesus look at you! You sluts heading to a pole?” These words snarl out of the mouth of a respectably dressed man and we stop in horror. Shivers roll up my back in fear. It’s dark. We are alone. What. Do. We. Do??? One of us pulls the finger back. I can never be sure how quickly a sexist man can get angry so we walk quickly away. We’re angry, so so angry. But also so… deflated. I wonder if we deserve this shame.

Not all men.

Sitting on the internet, Friday night and scrolling down my Facebook newsfeed:

“Haha, good job at the game today bro. You RAPED them!”
“Damn with tits like that, you’re asking for it :P”

Another sexist comment…
Another sexist comment…
Another sexist comment…

I’m shrinking and shrinking and shrinking and I want to CRY because these boys don’t realize how small they make me feel with just pressing a few keys. I see these boys on the streets, I talk to these boys, I laugh with these boys. Dear GOD, dear GOD i hope these boys don’t think actions speak louder than words…

Not all men.

Three rules that have been drilled into me since I was young run through my mind at 1.30am on a Satur… Sunday Morning:

-Don’t ever talk to strange men
-Don’t ever be alone at night in a strange place
-Don’t ever get into a car with a stranger

I break all 3 of these laws as I pull open the taxi door. Making light conversation with the driver, he doesn’t see my sweaty hand clutching the small pocket knife I keep hidden on me at all times. He doesn’t even realize the fear I feel at his mere presence. He cannot comprehend it, he never will. How easy would this 15 minute car ride be if I was born a boy?

Not all men.

It comes to Sunday, another snoozy, sleepy, Sunday and someone has the AUDACITY to tell me not all men are rapists. I say nothing.

I’m a 17 year old girl.
When I am walking alone and it’s dark, it’s all men.
When I am in a car with a man I don’t know well, it’s all men.
When men drunkenly leer at me on the streets, it’s all men.
When a boy won’t leave me alone at a party, it’s all men.

Not all men are rapists. But for a young girl like me? Every one of them has the potential to be.


a piece i wrote for an english assignment about my personal experiences with rape culture, in particular with the saying “not all men” which i know has been makin a lot of controversy on the internet recently! idk just wanted to share (via trueho)
I knew I matured when I realized every situation doesn’t need a reaction.
(via 29x57)

He paints red marks on my skin because I am a masterpiece that has yet to be finished. His fists are paint brushes, my ribs his canvas. He tells me I am a paper doll and that is why he tears me apart with such malevolent grace. I do not ask why he insists on leaving me on the floor every night, torn up and scribbled on. When I cough up blood, I don’t tell them why.

They do not understand the heart-shaped bruises or the black-eyed goodnight kisses. They don’t understand the sing-song way I cry “I love you” when he touches me, a declaration of our sick love. They do not understand that I am a torn piece of canvas, and god dammit, he will paint me twelve shades of red.

Twelve Shades of Love // heartofthebitter-mindofapoet (via heartofthebitter-mindofapoet)