john tiong chunghoo

Gold Star - 5,668 Points (Jan 21,1960 / Sibu, Sarawak, Borneo East Malaysia)

Bound Feet - Poem by john tiong chunghoo

from big foot to small foot, it's
a slow walk back to civilization
in more than 2,000 years - a pair of lotus feet -
small and nimble with crushed bones carry a frame
fragile as the blossom that signifies beauty and purity
to bolster an ego that carries the mark of a fair lady

Ancient Chinese oddities were
As myriad as its people.
One of these were bound feet.
A Chinese gentleman judged his woman
By the feet in those days.
Her face mattered but more were her
Feet which had to be as small
As three-inches, a society gauge for
Her breeding and status.
Confucius needs to take part of the
Blame for saying women are born to
Serve their men and no other
Which spawned the bound feet tradition.
Years of pains, tears and sleepless
Nights went into making these
Chinese women walk in little gaits as
Required of a lady, a sign that she was
Not a product of household chores.
Big feet equalled slavery and low births.
An ego trip, it was, for the adherents.

Topic(s) of this poem: culture

Form: Free Verse

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Read poems about / on: women, woman, people, birth

Poem Submitted: Monday, March 28, 2005

Poem Edited: Friday, December 9, 2016

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