girlhood

my mood ring turned from pink to black.
I have bright, blind memories of smearing
pink lipstick on my sister's cheek, kissing
the mirror over and over to make a perfect
shape and a perfect fantasy.

that was when we thought we could make boys
fall in love. feathers from boas fell to the ground
and my mother warned us:
being a girl was complicated. it is not
all dressing up and please's and thank you's.
I abandoned pointed toes when I found out
that "pink" means "girl" so pink means
weak, frivolous, disposable.

We learned how to become warrior types,
defend-each-other types, ready-for-battle
types but some people can't swallow
a smoothie blend of soft skin and
sharp teeth. we were too young to be making
fists out of fingers, I think. 

girlhood is a fragile sunshine that lasts
until your first confession, which almost
always has to do with existing.

I now realize that there's a big difference
between sharing a silence with someone and
being close together in your separate
silences. this is when I know that I
can't make people love me but I can
break hearts like bread and spill
blood like wine. I asked for peace, once.
they poured salt on me and I drowned.
My mood ring stays black.