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Menopause, The Dream

I had a dream about my genitals
sliding out like a piece of chewing gum

Plop into a toilet’s swampy waters

Imagine my surprise as I stood there

Naked since my underwear had been complex

Necessary to remove and my dress

The organdy layers fanning up at me

Laughing from a hook at my face looking

Down at the pink fallen flesh floating there

Weighty and then the automatic flush.

Saving myself the way one would do

I reached down and caught it held it in my hand

Washed it off in the sink patted it dry

I thought it would be easy to fit back in

That it would click into place settle

Like my diaphragm behind a bone

But what I couldn’t tell was which was the front

Which was the back and where did it really go?

Details I would certainly soon remember

So I wrapped it up in toilet paper

Put it in my purse and dressed without it

Returning to the party flushed unsexed

Invisible clutching my purse in a crowd

I wandered around drinking cheap champagne

Trying to find a doctor I could ask

If this was something I should have expected

I wanted a scientific answer

No one had warned me not even my mother

The queen of menopause goddess of the change

- Someday your genitals will just drop down

You could be anywhere so be prepared

I carry an airtight container with me

Just in case and darling you should as well

It happens anytime after forty one -

She could have offered practical advice

I would have accepted it with grace and poise

Hot flashes thinning hair fallen genitals

- Your most creative time - is all she had said

menopause and the mystery was for me

To discover like sex something beautiful

The way she had described it when I was eight

Sex that was now in my purse with lipstick

And car keys credit card receipts money

Items I may have lost or forgotten

Stolen borrowed reclaimed


Coleman Hough

COLEMAN HOUGH lives in Brooklyn. She wrote the screenplay for Steven Soderbergh's Full Frontal. "Menopause, The Dream" is an excerpt from her monologue, Vanishing Point.


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