(originally published in Quail Bell Magazine May 24th, 2017)
you walk with fire and dance with night, to feel
with blistered skin that shivers pale. what waits
for you in woods? for i have seen you kneel
by trees at night and followed you on dates,
and you are strange. your heart in half you wear
around your neck so men can see it shake
and pull the chain and make you hurt. we stare
but do not do a thing to help you make
it stop. then under ceiling fans, you pray
for angels to hold your hands, and he sighs
and calls you his barbie girl. and you say
this is where the bad men live. he lies.
your little heart we pushed in ground so deep
to keep it safe while under pines you sleep.