V  P  R

Contemporary Poetry and Poetics




I got a green dress for Jackie’s wedding
but then Jackie said I couldn’t wear green
so I got another dress but it was okay
I figured I would wear it
to my graduation green
seemed appropriate as a symbol.
But then I couldn’t because
I gained too much weight
but that was okay because
I found this other dress
with red white and blue stripes and

I hereby flame my husband Jos
for not doing what he doesn’t
feel like doing just because
he says life is short and knows
that I’ll almost forgive him
when rampant at the foot
of the bed, the sheet pulling up,
the mattress revealing pale flowers,
a dying-into-the-mattress pattern,
he looks down at me that way.

I hereby flame my babysitter
because when I came home
the kids were fighting, the baby
was crying, candy wrappers
littered the floor. My six-year-old
was standing on the sitter’s bag
the sitter said move
Cass screamed,
the sitter yanked the bag,
Cassie fell down
and hit her head. But I didn’t
fire the sitter, we had a long talk
and I’m sure she finds me
a reasonable person.

Today I saw that green dress again,
hanging in the closet
in layers and layers of diaphanous plastic.

Today I tacked up a card
to the trunk of my plum tree:
If you leave your dogshit here
I will get out my baseball bat.

© by Daisy Fried


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