Published: July 12th, 2015
Arika Elizenberry is a native of Las Vegas, Nevada. Some of her favorite poets are Nikki Giovanni, Langston Hughes, and Dorothy Parker. Her work has appeared in the Silver Compass, Neon Dreams, East Coast Literary, and Open Road Review with forthcoming publications in Aspirations, 300 Days of Sun, Blue Lyra Review, and ZO magazine. She currently holds an A.A. in Creative Writing and is working on a B.A. in English.
Carpet and Drapes
I walked the red carpet last night.
The plush carpet looked like
a sea of cherries and melted
like ice cream between my toes.
My hands sank into its roots
as I did backbends, cartwheels,
handstands, and back flips down
the runway with the moon
flickering through the drapes.
Who could resist the handsome
smile the moonlight held behind them?
Yanking them off their hinges, I wrapped
myself in its cotton softness only revealing
parts of me forgotten by the sun—the dimples
of Venus, the scar on my knee, the mole behind my ear.
Daytime is for children, but nighttime is
the right time for adults. When the stars come
out, playing with the carpet and drapes brings
out the woman in me.
Baby girl, baby girl, I can see it in your eye,
the face of my own, where your future lies.
Your pretty face that can launch ships,
will be the first on a therapists list.
You'll have no appetite, but no lethargy,
being indecisive will plague you greatly.
Thoughts of death consuming your mind,
your infectious smile keeping others blind.
A mistress of guises, a pretender of sorts,
like me, you'll appear to be a good sport.
I'll recognize the pain behind your gaze,
when your moods have their own craze.
Flesh of my flesh, bone of my bone,
mother knows the feeling of being alone.
Even amongst others, I'm not quite "there,"
you see it now, like the clothes I wear.
You'll have this, that, and others, baby girl,
because it's hardwired in your core.
Sweet as a sundae
in the month of May
Long or terse I say,
on my lips they stay
Our tongues lap and play
and mouths part away
I hate you - that would
be an understatement
It would be like saying
Hitler had a bad temper,
or that Stalin was
Your mother should’ve
bent her head forward
swallowing you and
your father whole--
instead of letting
his genes thrive.
You have as much
spine as a sponge,
as much vibrancy
as a graveyard,
as much morality
as the National Enquirer,
and a soul with the
depths of a puddle.
Your actions and dreams
seldom plumed like
a peacocks tail feathers.
Worst of all—your
negativity is more
potent than a cobra bite.
Careening down your highway
with my foot-heavy on the gas,
my tires roll over your--
crevices and grooves
and bumps in the road.
For miles, my tires swing--
along your curves exploring
every dip and matching
every valley and following
your crooked lines until I--
get straight to California.