Thursday, March 25, 2021


 Published in Zig Zag Lit Mag, issue 10

I, the oldest sister that December

Barbie arrives in our home, a new baby

me, awestruck, craven

wanting to feel her small body in

my arms

trace her delicate features with my fingertips

tiny feet

a marvel whom I adore

her scent, benign and sweet 

silent—such a good girl

dressed in black and white at the start so as not to garner too much attention

Years after, she trades up for the pink crinoline prom dress and backless plastic heels


The never-ending smile morphs into perpetual smirk

her eyes, dead pool

first, I am seven;

I become thirteen

my adoration melts like plastic shoes held over a flame

“You cannot compare your

dishpan hair to my blonde ponytail.

I am your statuesque mini

you will understand the unachievable— this tiny waist

though you will try like hell to mold, flatten, chisel

hate yourself

eat an apple one day

starve on bowls of cereal the next 

feed on nothingness, drink the air

still, you will never be me

I am the love of antiquarians

vintage, chic, collectible

ruination of your child/woman body.”

I remember daddy saying,

“If only we had kept her in her case,

she would have been worth so much more.”

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