Dorsía Smith Silva

Link to home pageLink to current issueLink to back issuesLink to information about the magazineLink to submission guidelinesSend email to

Wearing Red Logic

For the good girl that wants to wear red,
you cannot wear just any shade.
It cannot be so bright, that it hurts someone’s eyes
or be too dark that it reminds them of the
oxygenated blood that is pulsing beneath the skin.
No, it must be a perfect balance of crimson and ruby
like a candied apple on Valentine’s Day.
But you do not want to look that sweet, do you good girl?
Then maybe you should wear white, instead?
It’s much easier, unless Aunt Flo arrives.
If that is the case, then wear red.
You’ll thank me later.

Artwork by Gene McCormick

Intersections: When #Me Too Meets the Good Girl

When the good girl says that she is a victim of sexual harassment,
she must be ready for the polished hiss of questions:
What were you wearing?
Were you alone with him? 
Where is your evidence?
Did you tell anyone?
Why isn’t there a police report?
How do you expect us to believe you?
Why are you reporting this now?
Why did you wait?
What about #him too?
What did he say? Do?             
Well, that was just a joke, good girl. 
He didn’t mean it that way. 
You’re too sensitive.
How can you remember everything?
Are you sure it wasn’t someone else?
You must be mistaken, wrong, inaccurate.
Are you sure you want to say all of this? 
What if this man happened to be your son, brother, or husband?
But I thought that you always liked him, good girl?
I have photos of you smiling and you’re sitting right next to him.
Why didn’t you just change jobs, move, or just push his hands away?
You are not acting like yourself, good girl.
You’re hysterical, angry, nasty.
But if you really want to tell your story, then you must be ready.


Dorsía Smith Silva is a Full Professor of English at the University of Puerto Rico, Río Piedras and her poems have been published in Aji Magazine, Portland Review, Saw Palm, Likely Red Press, Gravel, MORIA Literary Magazine, Tipton Poetry Journal, Penultimate Peanut Magazine, Snapdragon: A Journal of Art and Healing, Edison Literary Review, Apple Valley Review, Bright Sleep Magazine, Mom Egg Review, Foliate Oak Literary Magazine, The B’K, WINK, Poetry Quarterly, POUI: Cave Hill Journal of Creative Writing, Adanna, Rigorous, Shot Glass Journal, Tonguas, and the book Mothers and Daughters.