Daughters of the Playground

by Marybeth Rua-Larsen

Girls want girls, not boys in the blacktop shadows:
hop-scotch, jump-rope, hands in the kitten’s cradle,
hush-hush lips brush ears on the playground. Listen—
Girls need a girlfriend.

       Orchids rule. Let wildflowers bloom in riots.
       Stand, resist the wind as your quaking petals
       beg me back, your stem-shaking sobs a turning,
       twisting to my light.

Overhead our billowing blanket — breasts or
balls beneath? When lips evanesce on skin, all
flesh is heat, all markers retreat. I’ll never
settle on one love.

       Press me. Loft my lavenders, light and livid.
       Rip them free, no delicate violet, me, swell
       page on page and tighten the screws, renaming
       crush as quintessence.

Playgrounds gray, but games never age. Consider
slits-to-there or shoulders both broad and bare. When
playmates flex their minds and their bodies — swing, kick
high and you’re flying.

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