Tonight I shall shake dreams from my hair,
silver petals of memories I thought I’d buried.
I will paint papier mache scars with pearls,
petulant lips puckered up in a perfect pout,
just so I can excuse their avoidable existence.
Do you know braille? Can you count the lines
of failure on my skin without frowning?
It seems I like to build bars around me,
joking about emotional jails; as if to hurt
is to be weak, and to admit it is a crime.
If this is my sin, so be it. Why shouldn’t
I hit back at those that spit on me?
The perfect poise, the lady-like vowels
are poisoning a freedom I never realised
I wanted. How much straighter can a back get?
Such incessant guilt for flaws that I might
as well have something for confession.
But nothing is constant, not even pretending
to be perfect. The letters to my name change, so
every time you see me, you have to read me all over again.