Fiona’s Poem: Cat-Call

By | December 7th, 2010 | 12 comments

I’d like to say,
“Hey, I’m not yours to call at!”
But, instead I just walk faster and pull up my hood.

I’d like to remark,
“Does your wife know about that?”
I wonder how she’d like it; I don’t think she would.

I’d like to be mean,
And yell, “you’re old and fat!”
But your words make me realize I’ve reached adulthood.

I’d like to turn around,
And whistle right back.
I’d do it if I didn’t think I’d be misunderstood.

I’d like to say,
“That’s illegal, now scat!”
In New York City, someday that may do some good.

Fiona Lowenstein is a weekly guest blogger, Girls Leadership Institute alumna and high school junior. Read more about her work here.

12 Responses to “Fiona’s Poem: Cat-Call”

  • Katy says:

    all I think is that there is no point of putting that “poem” on there!

  • [...] make a cartoon (see Liza Donnelly‘s, Barry Deutsch‘s, and Jerrod Koon‘s); write a poem (see Fiona Lowenstein‘s and Bif Naked‘s poems); put on a show (see Leah King’s one woman show “Can I get a [...]

  • Java says:

    i think that this should not be happening to anybody!

  • LALALALA says:

    WAT NO ONE IS BEING SEXUALLY HARASSED!!! BUT I DO AGREE CAT CALLERS NEED MANNERS!!!!!!!!! HEEHEE

  • JR says:

    Well, I kind of disagree with what some of these people are saying. It makes me feel good when i am whistled at. I feel like I am pretty and attractive. I also disagree with Laur because this is not sexual harassment it is simply a whistle. It does not hurt anyone so why is it such a problem. Unless the person comes to you and touches you, it is not a problem. If a person does touch you, then that is a problem.

    Freedom of speech is not a crime.

  • JR says:

    Well, I kind of disagree with what some of these people are saying. It makes me feel good when i am whistled at. I feel like I am pretty and attractive. I also disagree with Laur because this is not sexual harassment it is simply a whistle. It does not hurt anyone so why is it such a problem. Unless the person comes to you and touches you, it is not a problem.

    Freedom of speech is not a crime.

    • Fiona Lowenstein says:

      While freedom of speech is something our society values, there are instances in which hateful and harassing speech has been criminalized. While whistling at someone may not seem harmful to you, and may even seem flattering, the same action may make someone else feel unsafe. I remember the first time someone whistled at me when I was in sixth grade, and I remember it frightened me, not because of the action of whistling, itself, but because of the connotations it had for me, and the broader meaning behind the action. Where do we draw the line between someone whistling, someone yelling “Come here, baby!” and someone yelling that they want to have sex with you against your will?

  • ANS says:

    I definitely agree. No one should be in that position! I hope you come up with a way to stop those men from doing that! I would be happy to give you Idea’s!

    Thanks,
    ANS

    • Fiona Lowenstein says:

      Thanks! We could definitely all benefit from a dialogue about how to deal with negative attention on the street. What suggestions do you have?

  • [...] make a cartoon (see Liza Donnelly‘s, Barry Deutsch‘s, and Jerrod Koon‘s); write a poem (see Fiona Lowenstein‘s and Bif Naked‘s poems); put on a show (see Leah King’s one woman show “Can I get a [...]

  • Laur says:

    This is beautiful.

    No one should have to be sexually harassed, on the street or anywhere else.

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