Dress Up, Tehachapi, circa 1993 (before the world caves in)

Sometimes I still feel like
seven years old
standing in my grammy's dressing room
a mirror on every side
convinced her heels almost fit
They were blue
(I remember because she let me keep them)

The dresses were huge, waist down to my knees
I had the choice of anything in her closet,
anything at all,
as if you can really choose

Her make-up counter was free-reign too
Might as well have been Macy's,
(it had the same smell of overwhelming perfume)
Again the choice: dusty rose or peach blossom
The world is before you
and your choices now, so vast, so irrelevant

I wanted then a way to make my freckles blend into a smooth brown-ness
like the pretty girls, with the curly hair
She didn’t understand my request and handed me rouge instead
(That will smooth you over, that will fix your perceived-problems)

I think now that I may have known as much then
about choices and not-choices
and how to be and how to blend in
and how to settle for nothing because that makes it easier

And it doesn’t really matter who you become

Because I can’t shake the feeling that I am still,
inside, that seven year old
with the world of choice before her
and not even a preference for peach or dusty rose
(and not even a clue that the shoes don’t fit)

1 comment:

  1. This poem proves you to be a story-teller. Honest. And introspective, in the best sense of the word.

    Excellent ending.

    I know what I want.
    But I don't actually know what I want.
    You know?