Gail White

Points in Favor of Being a Woman

No one asks you what you think.
No one cares what you believe.
At your heresies, they wink.
All your failings, they reprieve.

Pain and fear can make you shrink--
No one minds if you're not brave.
When the ship's about to sink,
You're the first the crew will save.

If you have ambitious schemes,
No one's bothered if they fail.
You can hitch your hopes and dreams
To the nearest rising male.
Pity men their lives of stress:
You're successful with much less.


Is that a name to give your only son?
What did you care? My mother loved you so
she threw off beauty and became a nun
only because you said, "It's over. Go,
you bride of Christ, we're only siblings now."
I never saw you save by fits and starts
and poor relations raised me, God knows how--
in wedlock born, a bastard in your hearts.
True, mother found me a small benefice
which kept me in the church, and therefore near
to her, but never near enough to kiss,
or talk with no one else to overhear.
Her love, your life, remained a world apart.
It took the pair of you to break my heart.


Gail White is active in the formalist poetry movement, with recent or forthcoming work in Measure, Raintown Review, and First Things. Her poems appear in the Best of Barefoot Muse anthology, Southern Poetry--Louisiana, and two Pocket Poets anthologies. She co-edited the anthology The Muse Strikes Back and is the author of three books of poetry, the latest being The Accidental Cynic. Her new chapbook, Sonnets in a Hostile World, is available from Amazon. She lives with her husband and three cats in Breaux Bridge, Louisiana. Earlier work in Mezzo Cammin: 2010.1 & 2007.1.


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Gail White
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Mezzo Cammin is proud to announce the third anniversary of The Mezzo Cammin Women Poets Timeline Project, which will be celebrated on Thursday, March 21, from 6:00-9:00 at the Pennsylvania Academy of the Fine Arts, as part of its PAFA After Dark series and in affiliation with its exhibition The Female Gaze. Featured readers will include Rachel Hadas, Marilyn Nelson, and Sonia Sanchez. Also performing will be singer Suzzette Ortiz and poets from the Philadelphia Youth Movement. The event is open to the public.
Jean Shin: Much of my work is site-specific, establishing a dialogue with not only architecture and outdoor spaces, but also the communities that inhabit and activate them. By reinserting used, familiar materials back into the public realm, I invite a large, diverse audience to bring their own histories to the work. Through these encounters each installation forms its own imagined community, revealing new associations and meanings for ephemera, and speaking to our shared experiences.
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