Mirror Girls (Dear Alex)

          Dear Alex,
                    Would you believe that tonight in my bathroom,
I faced two mirrors together and opened a doorway?
I saw in dual reflections,
Thousands of replicas of myself.
Each girl becoming fainter and darker.
Each girl begging to trade places and make me their alter!
            Baby, you tell them the truth:
To stay sleeping, worshipping,
In their backwards glass worlds.
Tell them life isn't pretty enough for mirror girls.
Tell them how I spent my childhood raised by,
Parents that were less than the American dream.
Tell them how the other girls told my mom,
They wouldn't play with me,
Cuz I was too-weird-too-strange-too-unorthodox,
for their brains.
You narrate to them my life as a victim of my father's high;
How he snatched up any stability.
Tell those envious mirror girls I got by in life without pity.
          All this upheaval was too much,
For my mother the pills just weren't enough.
We had our nervous systems re-organized, re-arranged;
Something snapped, maybe even a little deranged.

          You confess that I learned to cut myself as a form of communication,
The blade of a scissor as consolation,
With my black-cherry magenta slices of beautiful, mutilated decoration.
          And here is the kicker, the one I adore to hate:
You saw how I spent half a year in a panicked state!
          Yes, certainly the brain was on self-destruct.
My life hasn't been Strawberries and Creme, Crimson and Clover -

            What about my uncle, "Execution-style" murdered?!

2 teenage cousins with babies,
3 younger siblings in adversity aching,
4 brothers not speaking,
5 mothers - all leaving,
6 fingered Uncle Louie,
The 7 train to New York Fuckin' City,
8 years 'til I learned to write what I was feeling,
9 - the number you guessed I was thinking.

            The dog bit this girl in the mouth,
            And she almost lost face.
            Now, scarred for life,
            Mirrors remind her of that blood taste.

                        Babe, you tell them.

2005 Underground Voices