Guest poem sent in by Erin Cheatham
(Poem #533) The Gift
Thinking she was the gift they began to package it early. They waxed its smile they lowered its eyes they tuned its ears to the telephone they curled its hair they straightened its teeth they taught it to bury its wishbone they poured honey down its throat they made it say yes yes and yes they sat on its thumbs. That box has my name on it, said the man. It's for me. And they were not surprised. While they blew kisses and winked he took it home. He put it on a table where his friends could examine it saying dance saying faster. He plunged its tunnels he burned his name deeper. Later he put it on a platform under the lights saying push saying harder saying just what I wanted you've given me a son.
I came across this poem in one of my college textbooks and was immediately captivated. I appreciate the poems, like this one, that must be read over and over before they are understood on the surface alone, and must be read and analyzed and pored over to be truly understood. This is a beautiful, haunting, and chilling poem that looks at the cliche of the pretty, submissive, and simple-minded girl and ably gives that cliche depth. Erin