Something is wrong with me. I know it.
Last week, I nearly threw myself down the mouth
of the kitchen sink. Then, I slipped away,
only to be found, shaken, at the bottom
of the sheets. I can still remember when I was
perfect. How I curled around you like a pet
that rolls over just to feel itself submit.
Now I don't fit. You bring me to a man
who says he can change me. He says words
like tarnished and minimum. He takes your hand
and already I am gone from you. Next, he holds me
to the light, searching for flaws. Something
in his eyes looks very sure. But I will not
budge. I am too committed to be fixed.
We move into the back room. He examines
my circumference. Everywhere, the wink
of metal instruments. His hands are rough
from burns. He gives me water. I am set upon
a throne of stone. He says value is a pressure
that gives way. Then, heat, a biting serpent.
Call me your little lady, your sterling
darling. Don't be afraid. I, too, am
manmade. I was born heated and beaten
into what they call loveliness. With all
the deftness that allows you to forget
the size and weight of every promise,