Meaning

When asked in an office
hour what
plans I had for the coming
holiday season, I once
told a professor I’d probably
return, my hair twice the size.

On Wednesdays
and Mondays, I might wear
a hot pink lace dress
to class, I might–

like an open pomegranate
staining fingers I hadn’t
examined closely enough
for an obvious too many years–

walk the length of the whole
damned college campus in
my thirty-four-year bones.

The lace dress was
of course a bit youthful
but I was trying
to chameleon.

The color it turned me. What it meant
to replace the wild eyed creature of
dust with brazen fruit.

A skillet sun sliced beads.
Trailed my neck. I would
vibrate at a resonance
higher than my grasp. A mystery
structure. Too wide
and angled at the edge of a nervous
condescension of mouth.

On Fridays, we would meet at a bar
just off campus; the in-girls
and some
how some meaner version of me.

Fire in our glasses
I would drink enough to tell them
too much of everything.

Kari Flickinger’s poems have been nominated for Best of the Net and the Rhysling Award. She is an alumna of UC Berkeley and The Community of Writers. Find her: @kariflickinger kariflickinger.com.

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