Taming of the Shrew

Jan 30, 2017 | 0 comments

They stare at her through a plexi-

glass ceiling, her difference

a viable reason for suspicion.

They watch with squinted eyes

and furrowed brows, observing her every

movement with calculation, caution,



They decide when she eats,

sleeps, is auctioned off to the

next zookeeper who will

keep her like a prized possession,

locked inside a trophy case.

A beautiful thing to be marveled at,

a beautiful mind to be misshapen,

manipulated and mastered.


They tape a sign at her feet,

“Please don’t touch the exhibit,”

as if another’s fingerprints

across her skin is a symptom

of impurity though they never

bothered to ask if she desired

the burn of the their hands on

her neck— choking, controlling



They cut her vocal chords one

by one. “Insurance,” they say,

ensuring that she will never have

the ability to cry out against their

abuse. As if her body belongs to them,

an object to be owned. As if ‘insurance’

excuses the voice they

have taken from her. They come

for her tongue next, snipping it

like the feathers of a caged bird—

demoralizing, debilitating,



They beat her and break her

until they are left with the shell

of an anarchist.

They infiltrate every atom of her

being until she is programmed to

be the perfect woman—

submissive, servile,



They claim their genius,

reveling in the success of

their experiment.

Science is not a game of chance.

Even the most headstrong

horses can be broken.


But can they be

blamed? They were only following

Shakespeare’s lead.

About the Author

Sydney Thier

Sydney Thier

Co-Founder + Co-Editor

Sydney Esther Thier is a writer of words, animal sweater enthusiast and self-proclaimed raging feminist. As a junior SMAD Journalism/Independent Scholars Storytelling double major with minors in Creative Writing/Music Industry/Women’s and Gender Studies, Sydney enjoys taking at least thirty credits a semester and has banned sleep from her daily routine. Her favorite past times include petting dogs, writing parody sketches about Bernie Sanders and shouting ‘Matriarchy rising like a loaf of warm bread,’ from the highest of heights. Her future goal is to be the show runner of her own original TV series along with ruler of the world. Sydney is the cofounder and current co-editor in chief at Reduced Pulp.