poetry by Marisa Silva-Dunbar
I sit next to Mary in the circle at school.
She is always in sundresses, her long blonde hair flowing down.
Her bare skin is what draws attention to the curve of her shoulders,
the bones on her back. Her mulberry colored dress dips just below them.
She is my discovery of shoulder blades. I covet hers from the age of six on.
Clavicles, Antoinette is obsessed with them;
she lusts over one girl’s collarbone,
and the black stars that dart around it.
I think of my best friend at ten,
her bones were flawless,
just a hint to show she was slender, but healthy.
Dieting at eleven, I’d look in the mirror
knowing I was close to goal
when the outline of the bone pushed against my skin
When I’m twenty, Southern Charm’s waist
catches my eye in her leopard print bustier,
her long, rubied hair curling at the ends under the cup.
She’s Jessica Rabbit in black thigh-highs.
I think about silk and leather corsets,
the long line of the boning, and laces tightening,
the length of waist training.
My hands are porcelain doll small.
My best friend confesses she is jealous,
believes she has man hands,
but I like the tapered shape of her fingers, her long red nails.
Once, Andy pressed his hand to mine
at the Garden House after ordering a round of beer.