Here is the truth:
I was a mouse-girl, a shooting gallery duck,
knocked flat a dozen times a day.

I didn't have a lot to say.

If you kicked your big clown shoes out,
I'd meet them half way and feel like I'd had an appointment.
I was a "kick me" sign from the time I was alive.

Damaged goods.
Not pretty.
Head in the clouds.
Just like my father. 

So here came Momma with the big test-your-strength hammer. 
Metronome BAM!
Off to school I went, for more 
Lookin' at my shoes, not much to say.
Waiting for the next hit.

I coulda grown to be a nun or a serial killer,
But Momma had dibs on God and I was too shy to turn evil.
Now looka me.
Bold as brass when it suits me to be.
Momma's dead, both inside and outside my head.

Mostly good.
Not pretty.
Head in the clouds.
Just like my father, down to the mental case girlfriends.
Can't stand lies, so I'm still lonesome.

Here is the truth:
I'm Athena's owl with big bad-ass talons
and feathers soft as well-lit paradise.
I got here in a roundabout way.
So what?
I'm here,
and will screech and strut just as exactly as I please.

for Wordy Thursday: Silence Breakers.




Sherry Blue Sky said…
OH! MY! GOD! Yours is the poem I was waiting for, hoping for. Thank you. I so relate - the kick me sign. Oh, yes. I love "Momma's dead, both inside and outside my head." LOVE the talons and feathers. That is woman-strength for sure. "Can't stand lies, so I'm still lonesome". That is as true as it gets. My new favourite of yours, Shay. Thanks for writing to the prompt. You are one of the strongest women I know.
. said…
I feel very connected to this piece, starting with the picture.
Sioux Roslawski said…
Just a bit nonfictional?

Wonderful poem, as always.
Jim said…
Brings memories, unpleasant ones. Bam, bam, from my dad, boxing ears was his thing. Bullied in school, harassed by the 'ladies' at work, more. What was wrong with me? The norm?
hedgewitch said…
This is such a simple declarative masterwork that the amazing, skillful language, the mirrored word plays, are like an afterimage in the brain--I love the ending, because it is so true, and so you. It's good that Athena's owl, born from her father's forehead, has found her wings at last.
Kerry O'Connor said…
This is wonderful, Shay. So many lines I LOVE, but most especially, I appreciate the voice.. it chimes the way all voices should, in recognition of one's inalienable right to be heard.

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