Tuesday, June 23, 2015

Woman Of The Year

Sylvia Hawthorne-MacNaughton opened a can of whoop ass,
but it must have been expired, or something, because
nothing happened.

There she was, in the girls' bathroom, quiet as a church,
still as a mountain spring at midnight,
and boy, did she feel stupid.

She went on to be given a swirly by a pimple-faced girl with stick arms.
She went on to become a lexicographer.
She went on a long trip to Tibet, having lost her faith in the order of things.

Who is Sylvia, what is she, the peace movement's fairest darling?
The number one non-violent nun of the year,
the fruit that fell from the fuck-up tree?

All her life, Sylvia Hawthorne-MacNaughton resents that moment,
when the can of whoop ass let her down.
Seven presidents and prime ministers attend her funeral at age 92,

Droning on and on about what a beacon she was, and blah-de-la.
She would have gladly traded it all to have stuffed stick girl head-first
into the trash basket, when she was fifteen,

With her own plan for her life, before God hijacked it
and turned her into Woman Of The Year, holier than Jesus, nicer than Santa Claus.
________
 

18 comments:

Sioux said...

The line about the fruit and that tree--THAT is a keeper.

Lila said...

Not Woman Of The Year --- that's for sure. (To answer your question.)

I like the claws at the end.

mac said...

That's why one should always have a second, spare can of whoop-ass.
Yanno, in case it's stale or something?

Mama Zen said...

"the fruit that fell from the fuck-up tree."

My word, that is priceless!

Sherry Blue Sky said...

The fuck-up tree..............so that's what happened to me! I cracked up at your label - "nice is the new numb". Exactly. I am so There! LOL.

brudberg said...

There are those fruits that lead us astray, and the presidents at your grave doesn't matter a lot,

Marian said...

Yeah, "nice is the new numb" just about says it. A cautionary tale.

hedgewitch said...

Somehow God's plan usually manages to be exactly what we wanted to do anyway...I love the image of the expired can of whoop-ass--that rage itself is a fizzly thing that fails us when we need it and sits in the can when we ought to be using it. How seldom people are willing to admit that ridicule has affected them more than all the high holy noble booshwah in the world. The end is also priceless, with the accolades of the famous zombie brigade ringing in dead ears as some kind of consolation. Scathing, sad, and somehow also wistful--I don't know how you cook up that tasty a mix with the salty irony you boil it all up in, but you always do.

Lolamouse said...

I, too, LOVE the "fruit from the fuck up tree" line! I'm definitely going to use that one! This reminds me of the Rolling Stones "every cop is a criminal and every sinner a saint" line. Behind our public personas, what are we REALLY?

Kim Nelson said...

That first stanza soars, and the rest follow.

Buddah Moskowitz said...

Loved the perspective you took here... yes, sometimes we don't have a clue what life has in store for us. Great poem - la la mosk

Sweeper of Dreams said...

Love the journey you take us on, from childhood to adulthood which is really just childhood we stuff deeper inside and line with all sorts of masks and costumes.

Ileana said...

I don't know what's worse...being given a swirly by a scrawny, pimple-faced girl or being a lexicographer.

Rosemary Nissen-Wade said...

'nicer than Santa Claus' - what a dreadful fate! Loved it of course.

Sanaa Rizvi said...

Such an intense & emotive piece :D

Kerry O'Connor said...

I read you poem earlier this week on my tablet but have yet to comment.

Your characterization is always cutting-edge. i admire your ability to produce such well-rounded characters within the quite limiting framework of poetry. This was entertaining and also very moving to read.

Lynn said...

I think stick girl should be given a swirly!

K9friend said...

This says so much about the choices we make and how those choices affect our life.

Pat
Critter Alley