Molly Grue

I was rosy-cheeked, with sparkling eyes
when I was eight years old.
I danced, feeling the swirl
of imaginary gowns around my ankles.

I almost thought I saw you then,
until adult voices called out
to tell me about chores left undone.

There was still gold in my hair at sixteen.
But I swayed to different songs,
of moonlight promises that I knew
would evaporate faster than dew.

Did believing in you make me more gullible
to frivolous songs sung by unskilled bards?
I don’t know.

I know that I tried not to believe,
as sixteen faded into the distance,
as gold turned the color of the dishwater
I had my hands in every day.

Disappointment makes an excellent whetstone
for a tongue that wants to hide a tender heart,
still moved by tales of legendary bandits
and still intrigued by a magician’s words.

Then you arrived,
to fan the cinder of my belief,
when the bags under my eyes
were more noticeable than my lashes.

How could I not scream at you,
for all those times I needed wonder,
looked for it, and all I found
was the sound of my own sobbing?

Am I to start believing again
when the world has almost finished its job
of convincing me that faith is pointless,
and magic isn’t real?

I suppose,
since the world has done an incomplete job,
I will try to trust in what my eyes and heart see,
and start dancing again. 



Still from the movie The Last Unicorn


This poem was inspired by a prompt (I came up with!) over at Imaginary Gardens With Real Toads: Sidekicks in the Spotlight. I based it on a character from the cult classic, The Last Unicorn. 

Stage Fright

Dad’s sweatshirt transforms into a velvet cape,
draped over my shoulders.
I flourish a stick I found in the yard
in front of an appreciative plush audience.
Passing it over a hat I found
for a quarter at a garage sale,

I conjure flying silk squares,
and moon white rabbits
that do somersaults,
and sing songs dryads taught them
back when the world had plenty of magic beans.

But when I bring my wand, hat, and cape
to the school talent show,
when I stand alone on the stage,
all that I find in my hat is rabbit poo.


This poem was inspired by a prompt given over at Imaginary Gardens for Real Toads: Weekend Mini Challenge, Following a Thread