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It’s Just a Tampon, Not a Trojan Horse by Kira Coleman


by Kira Coleman



















I wish I’d broken up with you on the day

you said on the phone that there must be

something wrong with my body if I

couldn’t insert a tampon. You weren’t

listening to the way that my mother said

tampons were better for married women,

or the way the one female teacher on my

eighth grade canyoneering trip said it

might feel weird because I wasn’t used to

having anything in there when I wanted

to go swimming with my friends.


You were just thinking of how vaginas are

made to take and take and take, assuming

that the natural order of things is pliant,

but just tight enough to cradle your dick

—and I cried but I wish I’d realized what it

meant: that you would also assume my

sleeping vagina was meant for you to insert

your fingers, that my body would remember

that night and my mind would play back

calling you crying from the toilet because

I couldn’t get the tampon you’d told me to

shove in there out —


 And years later I would find myself

hyperventilating in public bathrooms all over

Spain when I could only find the scented pads

I was allergic to, left with the option of this or

wadding up some one-ply toilet paper and

crossing my fingers, trying not to picture a

dick, whispering to myself, “come on, it’s

okay it’s okay, it’s just a tampon — it’s not a

trojan horse.”

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