Stubborn Child is what would have been the third in my next series of poems, from a journal called Wildflower Muse. I am putting it out now, because I have decided to enter a contest with some of my recorded poems, and the first two in this series may be a part of the piece I enter. Today will also be the last day I post or read any posts until after the contest. I have my work cut out for me in preparing for it, as I am delving into uncharted waters.
Heather Lenz, the poetry editor for Stepping Stones Magazine, who became a mentor and a friend, went on to create Wildflower Muse. She published 6 of my poems and 2 non fiction pieces. I will always be incredibly grateful to her. I will writer more about Heather and her journal in a later post.
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When I was four, I wouldn’t let
my mother brush my hair.
I hated the pull and tug,
roots tearing from scalp,
all to satisfy a mother’s idea of what
perfect children should look like.
Long blonde hair and soldier teeth.
Every day she would take out the brush,
brandishing it like a bayonet,
but fear tactics didn’t work on me.
Feet planted and defiant hands on hips,
I challenged her, ready for battle.
I shrieked and raced down hallways,
hiding in dark closets until
she tired of my antics and gave up.
Let it fall out for all I care.
Waif. Urchin. Stubborn child.
Months passed without the threat of a single bristle.
The pale strands grew into an unruly dreadlock,
a tumble weed spun from white gold and insolence.
I wore my tangled crown with pride
and a satisfied grin of triumph.
One morning, mother came out with scissors
and cut the dreadlock off.