“His words leave a greasy residue, and we’re supposed to take it as praise”

Via google alerts, I came across this fantastic song about street harassment, written & performed by Emily Swashbuckle.

WordPress won’t let me embed the YouTube video. But here are the lyrics:

it’s mid-may; first heat wave
hits me like a brick
grab a friend and go to the lake and
have a quick picnic

sheet goes down, shoes come off
our skirts show our knees
man walks up to ask us
“where are your bikinis?”

after he leaves, we scratch at our arms to scrub off his gaze
his words leave a greasy residue, and we’re supposed to take it as praise

later in that same month
i’m walking down the block
i smile at each stranger
and then one cuts me off.

puts his hand on my arm
says, “you’re why boys like heat—
girls start to look so good
walkin’ down the street.”

i smile and try to walk by
he steps in my path
eyes wandering from my face
down to my exposed calves

i’m thankful it’s daylight
i finally dodge his grasp
look back just one time and—
he’s staring at my ass.

when i first get home i feel stupid for getting so scared
but then i get angry at the fact that that asshole dared
to touch me.

baby, it’s just a compliment!
baby, don’t be scared, i just think you’re PERFECT.
until you reject me— then you’re a frigid dyke
baby, i’ve got free speech, it’s my RIGHT.

WELL, NO.
you don’t have the inalienable right to get up in my face
you don’t have the inalienable right to violate my space
you don’t have the inalienable right to say “hey, nice legs, baby, let’s party.”

fuck
no.

Yeah!

Want to view or read the lyrics to more anti-street harassment songs? Visit the resources section of my website.

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