The Untold Story of Katherine Howard, Henry the VIII’s Fifth Wife by Georgia Sewell | International Women’s Day Celebration

*Trigger warning: sexual violence*

You know me as queen. A lady. His lady.

By his side, till death do us part.

But, I want to tell you a story. The one that led to me being known as a tart.

Here I stand, being judged by you.

You decide my fate, what is false and what is to be true.

It started when I was 14. My bedroom door and it’s badly hidden key.

He entered; my skirt was raised above my knees.

He was my music teacher, with a too much curiosity,

I still feel it all now, the shame overwhelms me.

I lived for years, thinking this was okay,

Before gossip spread and I’m known as the queen who lays

On my back as I feel the men’s weight,

I’m not Queen Katherine anymore, but slutty Kate

Standing accused of adultery on the king

Blamed for having sex whilst wearing his ring.

It wasn’t consensual. It never has been

But I’m called a prude if I’m not seen as keen

Now my end has come without feeling love from any man

Just sex, and kisses, and babies, because they can.

But I’m just a girl who never asked for this life

I never asked to be Henry VIII’s wife

I never asked for responsibility,

Like most women, I just wanted liberty.

To be a beautiful fool is the best thing to be

Mother would say that to me,

But there is one thing I’ve learnt

Over the years, my heart has been so burnt

And it’s not just Henry who’s like this

Who has a Mrs and a Miss.

Because man doesn’t have to be royalty, to be king

His gender alone, decides that we should be worshipping.

Follow Georgia on twitter @georgiasewell_x and Instagram @georgiasewell_xx

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