Thursday, May 10, 2012

Open Letter to the Young Sorority Girls Who Mocked My Beard

I saw you
cup your mouths
like you were drinking
from a slow-moving stream

I heard you
as the Kate Spade
constructed critique
dripped through your ringed fingers

I watched you
as you spun your heads
and rolled your corrective lenses
in those small cages of heavy mascara

I caught you
as you walked away
shaking your heads like
disagreeable Parkinson’s patients

And I just wanted you to know
that the beard is a toy, a game,
a ruse.  It is, at best, a prop
I use to pick up attention
like still-husked corn.

And I am disappointed
because I thought you would understand.

Knowing you too seek attention,
you must—

with those thighs sculpted
by a baker’s dozen,
that hair, a stringy mop,
you must have dyed and re-dyed
like schizophrenic eggs,
those plastic shorts and oversized
shirts that cover everything and
still whisper of a ravaged woman.

We both worked for it ladies.
Mine makes me a cartoon,

yours—the vapid precipitate that comes
once privilege and pretense dry.

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