Little Girl Blues

Published in The Daily Star Literature Page, August 2008.

She wakes up screaming blue murder:

the monsters in her heart are

as sad and solitary as water in a stagnant pond.

She chops her day up into pieces as tiny as her face.

Brushing teeth, breakfast, tv, playtime, lunch, naptime.

Waiting for mamma to get home

(from her wanderings when she’s in the house and out).

Waiting for daddy to come see

(here and gone like a jackrabbit

searching for an old hole)

Her nights ablaze in wonder and misery,

her eyelashes are fragile as she sleeps.

Her even breath is music unto itself

giving mamma no rhythm to dance to,

when the day is done and the night’s eye

is not much more than an uneasy flicker in some

tenebrous game.