Femininity is pressed flower petals in your grandmother’s tabletop bible,
hand-me-down to your mother, probably won’t ever make it to your hands;
it nests under the coffee table
your father made for her so many years ago
from the oak trees
whose memory you never had the pleasure of making acquaintances;
tree rings telling novels reminiscent
of the rings from your coffee cup;
but the bible—
funeral flowers falling out between the pages as your child touches
them like butterfly wings—he’s got magic eyes.
It is the half-laugh, half-sigh falling from your half-open mouth,
gentle snow falling on the windowsill in October; off season weather
becoming the normalcy you get lost in, the snow squall blinding you and
you’re biting into the soft of your lip &
trying to bundle yourself against the cold
with cedarwood and sweaters.
Pastel and heatherbrown, the pink tips of your fingers,
the rose of your knees, the hardwood floor where you
spent too much time praying for some kind of redemption
you were illusion’d into needing.
There are feathers you used to collect on nature walks,
blue jay and cardinal sin red, stuffed into the books you don’t read anymore,
finch bones in a bag, you couldn’t help but envy
for their hollowness. You had magic eyes, too.
Beaten out of your skin, opalescent;
your girlhood was a piece of orange in your mouth.
You swallowed it sweet, a lump in your throat
the sunrise you used to watch
before you fell into your
idea of sleep, daylight daughter
counting the breaths
between your own thoughts,
between your thighs;
you were not meant for this.
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