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A Gift for One
Strangers laugh and point at me.
Fingers carelessly lighting
fires as if magic bred beneath
their shirt sleeves. I used to
burn badly. Now I stroll with
the pain. Bring me more, please.
It is beautiful, no? Suffering.
So I'm the sour girl, woman-child.
The oddity. The shrinking violet
in a field of drunk wild flowers.
And if you search long enough
you may see me. My short petals,
the purple glint in my eyes.
But I blend in well. I've learned
to adapt to changing seasons.
Smiles in Summer, frowns in Winter.
So when you arrive at my garden,
don't expect to pick a bouquet.
I travel solo. A gift for one.
when you're not looking
the wind will steal your
carry them away
like broken seeds
onto the earth,
the dew of young ivy
or final wishes
of the dying
the next time
a young poet
shows your their
the ink fresh
spilling words they swear
the caverns of their soul
then politely say
and walk away
reciting their poem
line by line
your hushed breath
I should have hung you out to dry.
Let the tempest have its way with
you before setting you down to roam.
Spotted you hiding beneath piles of
soiled socks and stained dreams. You
smelled of freshly dug earth where
fallen leaves gathered for one last
hurrah. I said a prayer for you,
thinking you were too far gone from
salvation. I asked the sun if he knew
your name; he called you stranger,
having never seen the whites of your
eyes, only gray clouds lingering in
your sky. The moon leads you by the
hand, pleading for another game of hide
and seek. You oblige, always hiding
in the shadows but hoping to be found.
The lingerie baby doll
from the plastic door hook
in the bedroom
violet lint like dead skin
My thighs tremble
know what's about to
layer by layer
through bites of
macadamia nut brownies
and cream filled donuts
the raw skin
the bruised ego
the throwing of fits
the size 6 label
is ripped from its
left to fend for itself
in the jungle
of dress receipts
and discarded ego
The killer walks away
dragging the mother behind
there would be no witnesses
Copyright Sandy Hiss, 2007
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