POET & JOURNALIST
Sabine Magnet is a writer, poet and journalist. Her poems, short stories, and essays in German and English appeared in various magazines, anthologies, art projects, fanzines and other publications. Her poetry chapbook Poesía Clandestina was published in 2012 accompanying an exhibition of her poems. The same year, she launched Magnet Verlag, an Indie press based in Munich, Germany. In 2017, she started POETRY TO GO, a poetry performance based on the poet-for-hire tradition and lead to appearances in several art shows. Her non-fiction book Und was, wenn alle merken, dass ich gar nichts kann? about the impostor phenomenon came out in early 2018. Sabine divides her time between Munich and London and is currently working on a poetry installation.
When you can keep your head when all about you
Are blaming everything that happens to you on you.
When you can trust yourself when all men doubt you
And overcome your age-old self-doubt, too.
When you decide you’re done with all the waiting,
With lying to yourself and others, playing nice,
With being hated and, much worse, with hating
Yourself and worrying if you look too good, or talk too wise.
When you can choose – and get to have a real choice.
When you can think – and speak your truth no matter what.
When you take on the mission, when you find your voice
And raise it even though they tell you not.
When you can bear to be destroyed because you’ve spoken
Your words be twisted by the scared oppressors and the trolls
Or watch your reputation, career, livelihood be broken
And walk through it with grace, or even LOLs.
When you can own and celebrate your winnings
The same way as you celebrate your sisters’ wins.
And when you lose, you start again at your beginnings
And always know that that’s how victory begins.
When you start realizing just how strong and able
You really are and that you’re no less than a man
And when the world starts telling you the age-old fable
Of female impuissance, you show the world: ‘I can!’
When you expose the musts and shoulds that caged you
Without humiliating those still in the cages.
When neither praise nor diss truly affect you
And you feel comfortable at all your ages.
When you can – just like that – be still for one full hour,
And find tranquility amidst the inner turmoil and the outer whirls,
Yours is the world because you’re standing in your power
And – which is more – you will be Women, my beloved girls.
After Rudyard Kipling’s “If” – dedicated to Sabine’s nieces.