Misconceptions of Childhood
My father was a sidewise Jack, always in profile, a hand on his rod. His pack was a Destroyer, said my mother, where he played ping-pong on the deck, two fingers flat on his spade. I saw his photo: a big-bellied dick in a tailor-made sailor suit. "Bye-Bye!" he waved, and out I sprang, strong enough to shove all the drawers shut. My teeth took root. White stalagmites, their stems sunk inward and rotted. Biting strawberries, they sheared unripe heads from luscious tips. The leaves caused a rash. My mouth's toes, St. Theresa, grind with your hips when you close your eyes. Sex is sacred, you say. Leaving me, to prove it.
From Soft Box from Celia Bland. Copyright © 2004 by Celia Bland. Reprinted by permission of CavanKerry Press. All rights reserved.