Three Poems – Rachel Wiley



We are far and away from the days we were homecoming queens of the convenience 
store parking lot, fuel pump island girls who smelled of candy and gasoline, 
who welcomed in the cars who’s bass shook the ground like furious dancing gods, 
and offered ourselves up to  them when we knew what our youth 
and cleavage and the well-timed lick of a blow pop could get us, 
but not yet what they would cost us 
as we never bothered to read the promissory notes we signed to be young 
and girl 
and without curfew. 
We assumed the terms to be ours. 

We could not know what we would leave behind in wandering naive from our hilltop
that we would come to know what it means to be debt-full 
and woman 
and still with no one is calling us home.

I thank the rumble Gods for you
in the age girls are taught that our worth lies under the earth of other girls’ feet
and in the hot breath of men
we managed a double knotted string from your tin can heart to mine
that has been the guide line that leads me back to all of our safe 
when I have dived too far into the dark.
Again and again.

One of these days we’ll have scraped enough gas money from the floor mats to run away 
some place where we don’t have to wear this skin like bark. 
We will stand on a beach tasting a salt spray not made of Midwest wind and tears 
after everyone else has gone to sleep
and we will peel down to the soft fruit 
and it for once it won’t hurt. 
And for once it will be on our terms.
We will not spend any more years piling on scabs until we are crab shelled laughter ghosts. 
We will be unsalted hot pearls and we will once again be royalty.

Horoscope for the Premature Scorpio

That Libra is your Diego Rivera.

	When you can hear your ex fucking the next door neighbor thru your shared bedroom 
wall find a new lover and fuck louder. If a dance partner is not readily available without 
settling (as you are no longer permitted to settle now that the moon of your self-loathing 
is in retrograde) buy a new vibrator and make him jealous of you alone. Permit yourself to 
make the sounds he never could manage to elicit from you. 

Make him jealous of the way he cannot feel whole without you the way you can feel whole 
without him. The way you can wear empty hands like a new trend that he could never pull off. 

Stop mourning. 

He will never be over you. He will be ungrateful and distracted but he will never have it 
so good. 

Karma, it’s petty that way.  

You love him as you have always loved him but you will die first and cannot wait for him 
to catch up. 

If he misses the rendezvous point you go on without him. 

Lucky numbers: 

his new lover’s birthday , the next time you bleed, and the next full moon

Dry Cake Wishes and Tap Water Dreams

On the birthday of the ex boyfriend who told me I was too intense I wish him a lifetime swaddled 
in beige.
Skinless chicken, boiled. 
Kraft singles. 
Polo shirts,tucked in.
Missionary sex, only ever in the bedroom, with the lights out and always planned ahead of time. 
Safety scissors.
Luke warm showers.
Skim milk.
Unsalted butter.
1 ply toilet paper.
The Music of Mumford and Sons.
A mini van.
Plain cheerios.
Apple picking.
A wedding in a strip mall chapel wearing your best polo shirt, tucked in.
A wife that wears headbands and uncomfortable silence.
Halfhearted hand jobs and a pair of dress socks for every anniversary.

Not me.
Never me again.
but all of the children you said you did not want
Including a daughter with eyes too much like mine.

About Rachel Wiley

Poet, Performer, Body Positive Activist View all posts by Rachel Wiley

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