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Status: Finished  |  Genre: Memoir  |  House: Booksie Classic

Submitted: September 10, 2018

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Submitted: September 10, 2018



Behind blinds binding bent bedroom beams of light

To shafts of backyard and back alley bases,

Harlequin sits

She is calm and cute, collected and shy

She knows what she wants.

When she sees what she likes,

She takes it.


Beyond beckoning sparkling images of

Beautiful girls in the daylight,

Wearing strapless swinging spring dresses

Made of cute pleated cotton,

Girls in pigtails and glittering smiles of

Perfect teeth,

Harlequin sits

She knows what she is, and she likes it.


Behind the innocent gaiety of every girl child

running through a sprinkler,

Holding a dripping orange

Popsicle that all too often

Becomes eroticized in the minds of

The dirtiest culture to walk,

Harlequin sits.

She knows that the girls know.

She knows that they will know.


And she is what is there

When they cannot hold their own.

She is a tornado twisting two ways,

Waiting to tear at

Flesh and bones, to

Pull both ways until the excess of desire

Pulls everyone apart,

Up to and including


She knows.


She knows because she is there.

She is the devil waiting at the bottom of the steps

After we fall down them again,

Slammed once more against

The cold, righteous smoothness

Of the glass ceiling.

She is there to pick us up after

Ownership is placed on us because

We cannot be drunk, naked, stay up late

Without ‘asking for it.’


She internalizes, appropriates, moves with asking for it.

When we do not ask for it,

She lets us hold it anyway.

When we cannot stay standing,

She glides in, a glimmering,

Gallant and glorious girl,


Ready to absorb and become what we cannot,

hold on our own.

She is us.


She is me.

She is in me.

She is the being turning in me

That made sure I was alive to

Say what had happened.

She is is the tormented twister made of

Tragedy ready to strike back

Against the sharp knife that

Cut her into me.

She is not the disguise.

I am the disguise.


She is the demon waiting for the moment

When the curtain falls again

So she can stretch her wings,

Her long, luxurious, luscious legs,

Spill her longing

Hair, her

Lascivious body,

Livid with ludicrous painfully loud and

Laughable assertion.


She fights for me so that

I can exist for myself.

She lives in me, made by

The men who thought that I was theirs

Because I lived and breathed through my own womb.

She was made by them, but is

The only thing that can hurt them

As much as they hurt me.

She is me without shame,

Without guilt, loss, or childhood yearning

She is the grownup in me,

And she can destroy us all.

She will not destroy me, though.

She is the only thing that

Loves me enough to

Let me be bad,

To not insist on my conformity,

My peaceful resignation,

The quenching of a fire that

Only burns because everyone

Keeps trying to

Put it out.


If I lost her I would be nothing

Because I would not be angry.

I would not be afraid,

I would not be tempted,


Outrageous and


I would not be ribald,



I would not be damaged goods,

Ruined by the fetish

Made by my

Innocent legs, my soft skin,

My loins, my clitoris,

My vagina, goddammit.


She is my courage to be disgusting,

The sprite that lets

The revolting become



Without her I die when

The first man looks at me.


She sits behind them,

Behind me,

Behind my smiling face, my

Attempt to be loved


And hates everyone she sees

Except for me.


She wants to trick you

And she can

And she will.


She is the ghost in the machine,

Animates the coldness of the wheels.


She is sensation and bitterness.

She is all the warmth I need.

© Copyright 2019 Nicky Kent. All rights reserved.

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