name calling

you should have your breasts done.
i’m more than willing to pay for it.
i know you’re proud of them.
but you know, you’ll just have them bigger.
trust me, they will look good on you.
oh, and while you are at it,
get your teeth straightened too
may be a brace will do.

that week, i stood in front of the mirror every day,
and looked at myself differently.
at the things that needed correction:
my small breasts which have fed two babies till their cheeks grew chubby and their thighs grew dimples i like to rest my fingers in as they fall asleep on my milk.
my barely crooked teeth that have grown to the front over the last few years.
my receding hairline.
the tiny furrows that have emerged at errant places on my face.
i never noticed them before.
may be he is right.

you know they do amazing hair transplants in Turkey.
i can take care or your brow problem for you,
so you don’t have to worry about them every day. wouldn’t that be great?
and if you want, we can go somewhere where they can give you more shapely calfs.
then you can wear dresses more.

now, i can tell you this.
sometimes, it will take you hours.
sometimes, it will take you years.
sometimes, you may never get to call something by its name.

i love you, but…
you’re beautiful, but…
you’re almost perfect, if only…
honey braised sour.
call it by its name.
changing its faces.
you should not take a minute of it.

he will tell you, he’s never hit you before,
never even raised his hands.
he’ll take offense when you call the cards.
‘you ungrateful bitch’ he will say.
he’ll say he’s given you everything you’ve never had.
and you will feel guilty.
even while knowing these words you make poetry out of
can be poison.
said in the right way, cunningly, at opportunistic times,
they will give you wounds you’ll find hard to recover from.

don’t take a minute more of it.
call it by its name no matter what.
changing its faces.
honey braised sour.
spit it out.
and walk away!

©Tsion B., 2017


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