Poetry: ‘Rough Copy’ By Efé


Rough Copy

Liv­ing on a con­crete slab of fake ideals

A mesh of cor­rup­ted ideo­lo­gies run by plastic mannequins.

‘Excess­ive’ waists restrained by cos­met­ic straight jackets.

Hair­less private parts slid into candy flossed magazines.

Hair­lines untrace­able, the strenu­ous duty of inter­woven thoughts run by a dead ringer.

“Keep your legs closed!” They say “Why are you so fri­gid?!” They say…

Pre­ju­diced based on the per­ceived monthly ‘curse’


“Miss?…Here…Take This Once a Day…Please Con­trol Your Birth!”

Baby moth­er? Fash­ionista? Hoe? Tom­boy? Superwoman?

Why so many boxes to fall into?

Long and thin? Fat and short? Mas­cu­line status decided by notches on a meas­ur­ing stick.

Who owns that stick? Who owns that fic­tion­al fantasy?

Fath­er fig­ures, fig­ures of speech as the ideal man is with­in reach, but often the stu­dent has no one to teach him.

Shoot­ing in the gym.

“Ay! Are you listen­ing? Cool. Here…take this…shoot…HIM!”

Sponge twists and beards. Con­scious­ness or copycat mir­ror images?

Bread­win­ners? Emas­cu­la­tion? Effem­in­ate? Road­man? Crisis of masculinity?

Why so many boxes to fall into?

Young men and women imprint­ing on a car­bon copy.

Lost notes in bottles all giv­ing the same message.

Social media…the stomp­ing ground for adop­ted personas.

The face behind the mask is afraid of being socially inferior.

Socially awk­ward, socially stun­ted, socially incom­plete, socially replaceable…

Try­ing to find iden­tity, seek­ing indem­nity for emo­tions and energy lost in the costly battle of self discovery.

Con­stantly being told…

“You’re so late!”

“That was so last year…”

“I use those shoes to walk my dog!”

Play­ing a game of kiss chase with a foggy ideology.

All run­ning towards the goal. Wear­ing dif­fer­ent col­ours of the same brand.

Are we really all that dif­fer­ent? Are we really that complex?

Surely not, with all the pic stitches and “out with my bitches!”

The “With the team” and “I look too clean” headlines

Subtle cues of pro­gress of a flu­id ideal.

What has been gained? What will have to be lost?

What has been improved? What will have to deteriorate?

You have the latest yes…

But you’re inter­per­son­al skills aren’t the greatest…stress…

We don’t con­nect with each oth­er, because we are too busy being vex with each other.

Jeal­ousy a hid­den melody in our sing-song re-affirm­a­tions of self.

“I’m doing bet­ter than you”

These are com­pet­i­tions with no award.

Are we who we say we are? Maybe we don’t know ourselves at all…the depths more complex…

Afraid to engage in deep digging.

So we evade, occupy mind space with magazine cut outs and idle thinking…

I think it’s safe to say we are a first draft, walk­ing dif­fer­ent paths with sim­il­ar pit stops….

We are yet to sub­mit the final form.

The fol­low­ing two tabs change con­tent below.


Efé is a Poet/Writer and Spoken Word Artist. Her work is influ­enced by a col­li­sion of her Afric­an ances­try and upbring­ing coupled with her Brit­ish-born life exper­i­ences often told in a humor­ous and relat­able way.

About Efé

Efé is a Poet/Writer and Spoken Word Artist. Her work is influenced by a collision of her African ancestry and upbringing coupled with her British-born life experiences often told in a humorous and relatable way.