Saturday, February 27, 2010

Le Petit Mort

I am no longer charming,
for, if I am to be evil, I will
have to be evil all the way.
I have retired my cold external
disregard; it stirs too many feelings
I am unwilling to cut free.
To be evil woman must forget,
cut herself off from even herself
as she serves herself, for
everyone feels a tug of doubt,
remorse for the small child
left dying in the gutter out of
neglect. I once read that even
women who do not want children
must prepare themselves
for the inevitable sting of guilt.
Unless completely severed,
our minds cannot forget our biology,
our cells crying out with primordial
messages that call us to act.
So I have left my charm behind
because to feed it I must have
others to sacrifice. I recognize
I am less charming without it.
It is, after all, charm. But I walk
a sharp edge between dark and light;
one cannot be whole any other way.
I hear my charm calling to me
from the closet. I don't console it--
I must treat it like it is dead.
I cannot forget things I still finger,
even listlessly. I make my mind
a blank slate. I stare hopefully
out the car window, hoping
to see it pass me in another car,
to simply catch a glimpse of my
oldest love and my old enemy.
I cannot bury her because she
will not appear--she stays hidden,
avoids the shovel like a knife
that would make her disappear
completely. I let her stir, clamor
in her little box, keep her like a
pair of baby shoes behind
the door.

I am through with her, but she
is not through with me.

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