Cycles

I’m not going to go into too much detail, but I’m thinking about cycles, especially those that come every month, and I want to talk a little bit more about something that I asked on Twitter:

Why are there not more metaphorical combinations of werewolves and menstruation in literature and movies?

A friend pointed me to “Ginger Snaps,” a movie in which a young woman gets her period for the first time and gets attacked by a werewolf drawn to the blood. She becomes a werewolf and there’s the time-honored “transformation as analogy for puberty” that we see in “Teen Wolf” and some other teen werewolf movies. But they let the menstruation thing go, even though she says what I think is a line that begs for more exploration: “Shit, I’ve got The Curse.”

I know, I know, werewolves have traditionally been used as metaphors for the beast inside all of us, especially (as tradition would have it) inside civilized men who have controlled most of their primal urges. And violence has traditionally been associated with men, etc etc etc.

But COME ON.

Here’s a creature that for the rest of its life will transform once a month and craves blood. (And meat. And…yeah.) This is BEGGING to be combined with the menstrual cycle. You can go into death begetting life begetting death, the reasons menstruation is called “The Curse,” female sexuality…what more could you ask for?

Let me tell you. Women feel that primal call too. Some days I’m hardly a person at all. There are periods (see what I did there) when all I want is a padded room in which I can throw myself around, so that I can stop behaving like a person for just a moment and let the feral thing inside of me have its time. And I am definitely not the only one.

Usually what we do when we ladies feel this way, in my experience, is we go on the town. I almost said “on the prowl,” and it wouldn’t be off-base. These are the nights we want to dance until we can’t move anymore and drink until we can’t think. These are the nights Lady Gaga music was made for. See, this is more socially acceptable than getting into a fight and easier to do than join a football team. You might not immediately recognize the aggression that hides inside women feeling feral, because most often we express it through sexuality instead of violence. Still, it’s there, and still, believe me, it can be hard to ignore.

So bring on the lady werewolves. Start mashing up your metaphors. It’s time for some genre-expanding, and we, darlings, are the ones to do it.

But be ready. There will be blood.

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