16 Haikus on the Horrors of Puberty


The first time I asked my mom to take me to buy a bra I was laying in bed, flat as a board, sweating odorless bullets. As she kissed me goodnight I steeled myself to ask, a shakiness in my voice and hands that was frankly overkill considering my mom’s general disposition. I worked up the nerve when she was one foot out the door and, once I did, she took pains to act as if she’d been waiting all along. So sweet. I was flooded with relief. She said that, how funny, she’d thought of buying me a little trainer just the other day! How lucky I’d asked. I was euphoric. All ten years of me.

Years passed before I actually needed the little bras we bought that weekend, but something about it felt ceremonious and necessary. A rite of passage. Puberty is so packageable in that way, isn’t it? First bra. First deodorant. First pube. First period. It’s satisfying only in hindsight, though. At the time it was like wandering around a haunted house, never knowing what new horror was around the corner. Except the house was your body and the skeletons were bad smells, coarse hairs and weird feelings.

Remember when we reminisced on losing our virginity via prose? Well, rewind a handful of years because this week, sixteen of us dared to take a commemorative lap around old haunted houses. It’s puberty poetry hour, guys. Read above and then pen your own!

Haley Nahman

Haley Nahman

Haley Nahman is the Features Director at Man Repeller.

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