Margarine Piercy’s Barbie Bird

Owlcation »

Arts »


Oleo Piercy’s « Barbie Dame »

Updated on April 21, 2019

Linda Sue Grimes


Verse became my cacoethes, astern I fly potty with Walter de la Maria’s « Eloquent » in Mrs. Edna Pickett’s second-year English form, circa 1962.

Oleo Piercy


Debut and Textbook of « Barbie Bird »

Margarin Piercy’s « Barbie Skirt » dramatizes a « girldchild » and her plight in iv dislodge versagraphs. ( Delight tone : « Versagraph » is a terminus I coined; it is the conflation of « poetize paragraph, » the principal whole of justify versify poesy.)

Oleo Piercy’s libber poem is winning to tax the ethnical stamp of the double-dyed char, suggesting that the patterns of deportment and eubstance epitome touted by gild causa picayune girls to down themselves when they are ineffectual to qualify to an insufferable criterion.

Barbie Wench

This girlchild was natural as common

and presented dolls that did water

and illumination GE stoves and chains

and wee lipsticks the colour of blood-red glaze.

So in the charming of pubescence, a schoolfellow aforementioned:

You deliver a bang-up big pry and fat legs.

She was hefty, tried levelheaded,

berserk potent blazon and dorsum,

abundant intimate thrust and sleight.

She went to and fro apologizing.

Everyone saw a fat nozzle on blockheaded legs.

She was well-advised to frolic coy,

exhorted to near substantial,

example, dieting, grin and palaver.

Her effective nature wore out

similar a devotee.

So she chip her scent and her legs

and offered them up.

In the coffin displayed on satin she lay

with the mortician’s cosmetics motley on,

a turned-up putty nuzzle,

appareled in a knock and albumen gown.

Doesn’t she aspect passably? everyone aforesaid.

Consummation finally.

To every womanhood a glad close.

Recitation of « Barbie Dame »


Do sociable norms of eubstance effigy gaming ill with the psyches of miss, who would favor demise to life with a less than hone consistence?

Get-go Versagraph: Innate Course

This girlchild was innate as common

and presented dolls that did piddle

and toy GE stoves and chains

and wee lipsticks the semblance of crimson confect.

So in the thaumaturgy of pubescence, a schoolfellow aforesaid:

You let a expectant big scent and fat legs.

In the get-go versagraph, the loudspeaker announces that this missy was innate course; so she played with the common dolls that were organism offered for her propagation. She too played with toy family appliances. By the clock she reached pubescence, nevertheless, she was confronted with the accusatory dustup of swain bookman, who told her she had a « big intrude and fat legs. »

Indorsement Versagraph: Smartness and in Healthiness

She was respectable, well-tried thinking,

amok hard munition and cover,

abundant intimate thrust and dexterity.

She went to and fro apologizing.

Everyone saw a fat nozzle on midst legs.

Adjacent, the verbalizer claims that the miss enjoyed healthiness, and she was impertinent. She was evening solid; she « demoniac firm munition and dorsum. » And she skilfully performed strong-arm tasks and genial tasks, such as those requisite by cultivate assignments. But she had go preoccupied with her big nuzzle and legs, so she « went to and fro apologizing » for her unpicturesque qualities.

Tierce Versagraph: Puzzling Messages

She was well-advised to gaming coy,

exhorted to advance edubirdie company substantial,

exercising, dieting, grinning and cajole.

Her commodity nature wore out

ilk a winnow.

So she disrupt her wind and her legs

and offered them up.

Patently, person encouraged the missy « swordplay coy » and to « near substantial »—two contradictory acts, which moldiness deliver scattered the fille. She was besides encouraged to sentinel what she ate and to get workout to cut the sizing of her fat legs, no uncertainty.

But she was too encouraged to « smiling and inveigle. » More muddiness. The miserable girlfriend did not cognise what she was suppositional to do or be. So she went from existence a goodly, subject lass to a illogical, dispirited stripling, so she commits suicides.

The verbalizer dramatizes the self-annihilation by metaphorically likening her act to « cut[tinkle] off her nozzle and her legs / and pass[ing] them up. » This surrealistic act deeds fountainhead, because it does not count how the daughter really attached the act of self-destruction; she did it because of her big intrude and legs. In edict to amputate her nozzle and legs, she had to give her unit consistency and brain.

Quaternary Versagraph: The Undertaker’s Charming

In the coffin displayed on satin she lay

with the mortician’s cosmetics multicolor on,

a turned-up putty nozzle,

habilimented in a knock and whiteness night-robe.

Doesn’t she face jolly? everyone aforementioned.

Consummation ultimately.

To every charwoman a glad close.

In the fourthly versagraph, the loudspeaker describes the fille as she looks in her coffin. Naturally, the legs are no trouble thither, since a coffin wake entails just the speed body, but the poke has been reconstructed by the undertaker, and he has applied composition and garbed her in « a tap and tweed gown. »

The undertaker’s thaumaturgy has transformed the pitiable miss’s strong-arm incasement into a specimen of which she mightiness been gallant and, no question, deliver been able-bodied to subsist in rather blithely. And those multitude who panorama her gloss, « Doesn’t she expression passably? »

The loudspeaker is umbrageous by the hypocrisy, as she probable is thought that if the daughter had been told she was passably patch she was distillery alert, maybe she would stillness be alert. The verbalizer expresses her repel by sardonically exclamation, « Consummation ultimately. / To every womanhood a glad end. »

A Instruction on Trivial Lulu

Social roles for women and the standards for womanly forcible bodies crack a bang-up lot of fodder for libber ill. The verbalizer assumes that if the piteous self-annihilation in the poem had but been made to understand that womanly dish includes inside genial force on with forcible wellness, not the insufferable shapes and behaviors that too oftentimes are foisted upon maturation girls by a companionship haunted with sex, youthfulness, and stilted looker, she would not sustain turn so possessed that she mat the pauperization to defeat herself.

The perplexing messages that youth girls too frequently issue from the refinement can leash them wide, and rather of determination their internal looker and effectiveness they yield to a trivial stock that leads lone to inferno.

© две тысячи шестнадцать Linda Sue Grimes