top of page


By : Brenda Echeverry

2 min read

I can date who I want, I enjoy having sex.

You call me a whore but it’s your late night text.

I reject your words that were meant to demean

Because I know that I am not unclean.

I’ve been cheated on and I’ve been unfaithful.

Felt all the emotions that came with betrayal.

Saw with eyes that glowed envious green.

But even still, I am not unclean.

I’ve bled each month since I was thirteen,

Yet you say the sight of my blood is too obscene.

So I pay a fortune for “feminine hygiene.”

Even as I bleed, I am not unclean.

I am in love with this body of mine,

And yes, I will post self-portraits online.

I want to be heard and I want to be seen.

I’ll say it again, I am not unclean!

As the tears trail down, they cleanse my soul

Of dark energy this body can no longer hold.

Released back into the world, I pray for its renewal,

In the hopes that it will once again shine like a jewel

And bring someone joy, serenity and peace

In knowing that they too, are not unclean.

—Brenda Echeverry

Originally published in-print in Boston Compass Newspaper #146 May 2022


Check out all the art and columns of May's Boston Compass at



bottom of page