Do you live through the neighborhood boys’
eyes? Every home you move to eventually
transforms into a prison. How do you unravel
the pattern of tragedy when you’re addicted
to the chaos of dangling from the roof?
Play your records to ease the monotony.
Daydream of exotic places you and the others
can explore. Tell the boys, your youngest sister
did not become a child bride in Calcutta—
let them know she created a life that wasn’t
tied to men—how she would kiss the feet
of Our Lady of Guadalupe when cleaning
her altar in a small chapel in Baja, California.
Plan your escape without a car, or noose or pills.
There must be some glimmer—light shimmering
through the trees. You can run barefoot
in the meadows, make flower crowns for you
and the rest of your sisters. Show your mother
she holds no power—that you will be seen,
and bloom like an oak bursting through cement.
Marisa Silva-Dunbar’s work has been published in Better Than Starbucks Magazine, Chantrelle’s Notebook and Pink Plastic House. Marisa is the co-editor of the anthology “Kirstofia.” She has work forthcoming in Sledgehammer Lit Mag, and The Daily Drunk Mag. You can find her on Twitter and Instagram @thesweetmaris. You can find more of her work at www.marisasilvadunbar.com.