Friday, November 21, 2014


I am 12.
A little young for my class,
I went to school early as mum says,
Or I skipped a class, like dad asserts,
Especially to his friends, showing off how bright I am.
I’m beginning to see the physical changes I learnt in my science class.
The ones Tr. Charles told us about and we were all laughing,
Too shy to think that it would happen to us.
Mum said I should stop removing the sweater in the afternoon.
She doesn’t like how that man looks at me,
The bachelor who moved in next door.
She also said I should stop hugging my uncle too much,
In fact, I should not hug any man.

She bought me new clothes to wear inside my school blouse,
“Boob top” She said. “That is what it is called.”
It will help the little swellings on my chest not to sag when they are bigger.
I am one part excited and two parts embarrassed.
Excited because I will not have to put potatoes inside my blouse when I go to high school.
Mum said that some girls in her school did that.
Embarrassed because very few girls in my class are like me.
“Early bloomer” That’s what they start calling me. Mum says there is no problem with me.
I am growing, and my age; the number of completion.
Like the twelve tribes of Israel.

I put on two sweaters, even on the hottest days.
Mum says I should never allow anyone to touch my chest.
That I should keep away from boys else I will get pregnant.
And you know what the fate of pregnant girls is?
They become school dropouts.
Not a good career I guess.
I want to be a lawyer,
Drive a formula one car,
And have at least one house in every country,
Including a lighthouse at the beach.

So when Kamau says there’s an insect on my sweater,
And then stretches his hand to remove it,
In slow motion, just like in the movies,
I see his hand coming closer to my chest,
My pupils dilate as the hand approaches.
“You want to get me pregnant!!”
I run without daring to look back.
Mum has a story from the early bloomer,
As for Kamau, well Kamau should know better
Than to want to touch an ambitious early bloomer’s chest.


  1. Its not easy to be a woman but it can be very enjoyable.Young girls should be taught to appreciate the the fact that they are girls,it begins earlier Emma,i believe it begins earlier

  2. True Trish, it has to start early. Thanks for reading.