Her gilded gown was made of polyester
frayed stitches
and half-baked fantasy.
The story was this:
when Rae was seven, she learned
that sleeping in the attic
veiled her
from the tyrannical uproar
that was her stepdad.
When he was manic, he took her
to Disneyland
where she cheesed for the camera
with every Beauty. She scrapbooked
them with dollar store glitter that she peeled
from skin like Elmer’s glue.

Faux leather flakes off her sleeves
like rose petals and dead-beat
father figures.
Now Rae is sixteen and learned
six dollar boxed wine and Fonzie jackets
worn like another skin will mask
the howling cries
that haunt her mothy princess dress.
But what kind of girl is she?
There are after all several
ways to skin anything.



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