Thursday, February 19, 2015

From A Sugar Bowl Womb

From a sugar bowl womb,
came the World's Sweetest Girl--

I'm like a vision at lake side,
talking rot to the swans--
and oh how I do go 

I am formed of the frilly, the feminine, the fine--
thanks to old Daddy down the anthracite mine.

One step,
two step,
three step, five;
I'm made out of honey from an old bee hive.
Work bee, 
fly bee,
sleep bee, then
sink that stinger if he tries it again.

Church on Sunday, Monday do the wash.
See if it sticks or scrubs right off.
Do you think I'm pretty?
Everybody does--

ask around,
ask Alice,
ask sweetly,
ask the swans.


TexWisGirl said...

you be trippy today, shay!

Shawna said...

I LOVE this. Every perfect word. These are my faves:

"From a sugar bowl womb"
"thanks to old Daddy down the anthracite mine"
the whole "one step, two step" stanza
"See if it sticks or scrubs right off"
"ask sweetly" at the end

I dig the accompanying picture, too. The whole post is a super sweet treat.

hedgewitch said...

I feel the ghost of coal breathing down the neck of this one, but you manage to outrun her and hit a more eerie note--or so it feels to me, with the odd and disjointed but spot-on telling images, and the mad-woman ramble overtones. Loved it.

Susan said...

Hmm, Sugar highs can drive a person crazy, moms and daughters too. Honey girl here just has to talk to the swans, poor sweet girl.

Sara said...

This was a fun read. I had written a comment about it sounding like a jump rope song when I did something stupid and lost the comment. It's now floating somewhere in the Internet.

Of course, now I read the labels and see "jump rope chants":~)

You did a great job with this one. It was fun to read and reads exactly like a jump rope song, I could see the little girls clapping and singing as they jumped rope.

Was that sexist? Do boys jump rope? I'm getting too old to figure this all out:~)

Mama Zen said...

You had me a "sugar bowl womb!"

Shadow said...

looooove this! Of course you are the sweetest one, who could doubt that...

Shawna said...

In case the obvious needs to be stated, her daddy molested her and totally messed her up. So now, her sweetness is her venom, and her only friends are the swans ... since they can't tell anyone her secrets.

Daryl said...

sweet .. yet not ... ummmmm

Kerry O'Connor said...

No one writes a jump rope song like you do. I love the rhymes, which add to the wicked fun but never overwhelm.

Sherry Blue Sky said...

Yup, you had me at the title too. Stellar write!

Shawna said...

"I'm made out of honey from an old bee hive."

An old hive would contain either no honey or rotten honey.

"ask Alice"

Who is Alice, aside from the obvious reference? Is she someone the speaker hurt? Is she the girl's mother, to whom the speaker now refers to only by first name because of the blame (regarding the abuse)? Is it code for "A lies" (meaning grade-A or perfect lies)?

"Church on Sunday, Monday do the wash.
See if it sticks or scrubs right off."

Every week, she tries to remake herself after church, to wash herself. And every week, the cleansing doesn't take. By Saturday night, she's back to square one because her "washing" has "scrubbed off." It never quite sticks. "Sticks" might also refer to the "sticks and stones" rhyme, meaning that even though she tries to clean herself off, she always feels attacked or beaten down. She ends up just relying on her prettiness and faux sweetness to get her through.

"Work bee,
fly bee,
sleep bee"

I like the way you substitute "bee" for "be" here. She's going through the motions of work-being, fly-being, and sleep-being. But there's no real "be" in her "bee." She doesn't really feel like she exists at all.

"and oh how I do go"

This line break tells us that in the end, she always leaves. She's always abandoning people because she doesn't want them to get close to her.

Anonymous said...

Whimsical and soooo tripped out, this is such a fun poem, Shay! (Thx for stopping at SLP, sorry it took so long to get back here...) Between the stanzas with form and the free verse, an utter delight. Your take on "sugar" in all its glory and Gloria? Mesmerizing! Amy

my heart's love songs said...

i never got to play jump rope with other kids, so didn't make that connection till i read your labels.

now i have Eurythmics "Would I Lie To You?" stuck in my head...

grapeling said...

there's a world somewhere made up of your jump-rope rhymes, like something out of Outer Limits. that's a good thing. ~

Carrie Van Horn said...

Sweet! This would be a perfect jump rope chant!! LOVE it Shay! :-)