Guns have always scared me.

If I see one in real life

my flesh crawls.

As a starting point

for a discussion about gun control

someone suggests

a law where only women

can carry guns.

It is tongue-in-cheek,

slightly subversive rhetoric.

I am in the process of unpacking

if that strategy backfired:

people just got angry

up in arms,

(mostly (old) white men)

can we not even TALK about

gender and violence?

There are correlations

there are creative solutions

but people don’t want to engage

in dialogue


they hurl epithets

saying how the logic is flawed and wrong.

Sneering “Data can prove anything.”

So this is what it’s like

to be a lightening rod.

I am trying to make sense of it all

but I don’t seem to have the right


I don’t know how to take my

safety off.

My action becomes jammed.

I feel irrelevant.

My triggering mechanism goes off repeatedly.

My anger is semi-automatic.

How to start this dialogue

when everyone comes in

with their metaphoric

guns a-blazing

and ears plugged with smoke?