shot glass
"... brevity is the soul of wit ..."
- William Shakespeare

Anita Olivia Koester

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Crown of Thorns

When I was young, they tried to send me down an aisle,
wrapped and packaged as pure, unadulterated

innocence, barely had my period,
and already I was a bride, ordered to denounce the devil,

choose my one true husband, but I had no faith
in men, knew the cross was merely the body

born having to bear itself.

When my breasts began to bud, I thought I had cancer,
forced my sister to touch the hard flesh growing under my nipple,
I cried, thinking this was the first stage of death.

When my mom offered to buy me a tiara,
I died my hair, pulled a Dark Side of the Moon t-shirt

over my head, left the store, the church,
to drag greedily at an uncle's cigarettes amid tombstones.