» Poetry

My First Time

in honor of International Women’s Day, March 8, 2020


The memory buzzes under
my skin like neon—in my young
twenties, before I understood
my daily risk of harassment
and humiliation, before I had
grievances, before I knew I was
entitled to grievances, I was
at the gynecologist, wrapped
in a johnny, lying down
on the examining table
for my first such exam,
knowing in the observing part
of my brain that a nurse
was supposed to be with me,
afraid of what the doctor
might find, and he entered
the room friendly, an older man,
asked me a few questions,
and then commanded, slide on
down here, Margot. I’m gonna
fill you full of cold steel.


Margot Wizansky

Margot Wizansky's poems have appeared online and in many journals, such as The Missouri Review, Crab Orchard Review, Moon City Review, Salamander, and The Maine Review. She edited two anthologies: Mercy of Tides: Poems for a Beach House, and Rough Places Plain: Poems of the Mountains. In Don’t Look Them In The Eye: Love, Life, and Jim Crow, she transcribed the oral history of her friend, Emerson Stamps, a grandson of slaves and son of sharecroppers. Margot has recently retired from a career developing housing for adults with disabilities. Margot lives in Massachusetts.