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Diane Elayne Dees
I dreamed the Evil Ones crept into my house
while I was sleeping.
They turned on my computer--
and amid the familiar hum,
I heard the rip of pages torn from books:
They opened all my cabinets and pantries,
tasted Mediterranean olives, tossed
kosher salt over their shoulders.
They went through all my dresser drawers,
slyly inspecting my underwear,
trying on my jewelry, crushing the African necklaces
in their hands, ripping the Australian pearls from their string,
stomping the French glass beads with their ornately carved boots.
After they stole my hard drive, they left a message
in blood on my mirror: Infidel.
It was only a dream, yet I can still trace
their scent: Obsession.
(originally published on the Poets Against War website)
Women Give Women
Women give women notecards and soap
for Christmas and birthdays. Every woman
I know has five dozen notecards
in a drawer: gardens, cats, kimonos, quilts,
birdhouses, trees, rendered in bright and muted colors,
most never touched by ink.
The soap displayed on the edge of the tub,
stashed away in drawers, stacked
on linen closet shelves. Lavender, oatmeal, mint,
thyme, rose; square, ball-shaped, oval, brick.
No woman can ever be clean enough,
smell good enough, communicate enough
to use up all the soap and notecards that track
the years of cancelled lunches, hurried phone calls,
failed road trips, misunderstood emails,
shaky marriages, unfulfilling careers, wasted worry.
Women give women a hint of beauty, a tease of scent,
when what women want are tears and poems.
(Originally published in Main Channel Voices)
Bea Kiddo's Second Wedding
The Bride, though stained, wears white.
Her veil-less face glows like the faces
of magazine brides she remembers from childhood,
when she longed for a touch, a look, from her handsome,
distant father. B.B. carries white lilies; her mother, a bouquet
of lily of the valley, sprung from Eve's tears when God banished her
from the garden. Beatrix walks alone, no man or woman
beside her down the narrow aisle. She wiggles a toe
inside the tight satin shoe as the organ music swells, and candlelight
beckons her to the altar. She smiles; the waiting groom thinks
she is smiling at him. She will promise to love, honor,
and cherish until parted by death. She will write thank-you
notes and decorate the house and take her new husband
to parent-teacher conferences. She will sleep in a bed
with this gentle man who wants to protect her
as long as they both shall live.
He is standing at the altar, waiting for her.
She goes to him; he takes her hand,
and she breathes deeply,
fearing her heart will explode.
(Originally published in Wicked Alice)
Copywrite 2006 Diane Elayne Dees
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