my body is not a temple

Artwork by Rudy Faber

the way we teach young girls to keep their lusting linger thoughts

closed between their legs

is through colorful backwards anecdotes

that are out of touch


and anti-woman

“your body is a temple”

my mother would chant

this is what I remember

being said the most

“Do you not know that your bodies are temples of the Holy Spirit, who is in you, whom you have received from God? You are not your own; you were bought at a price. Therefore honor God with your bodies.”

1 Corinthians 6:19

it was a reminder that my body

was sacred

and that sex was sacred

and basically

i should keep my legs closed

till the right man came along

worthy to worship

between my quivering knees.

the term temple confuses me

by its literal translation

from an 8 year old girl

that anyone and everyone is allowed

in holy spaces

even the damned and not worthy

because my understanding of how church works

is that everyone is welcomed

as long as you commit yourself to

whatever god you prayed too

to me it seems like the opposite advice

to give to a young girl

on the cusp of her puberty.

and mines for control.

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