on returning to my part time job-
they said to be tough, not dawdle with tasks
to sit up straight when the clock hits nine.
find solace in a coffee mug, or buy a new rug
if i feel unhappy.
sweep feelings under it, like i always do- the bitter ones,
the ones that still like to chew on the hard surfaces
of my heart, like a nyla bone a dog buried
and found years later after being left outside too long.
i thought i sanded that stupid organ; it's smoother now
there's nothing left to pick at.
they said 'buck up, it will be over soon...' chin up, show my teeth when i smile
'you have such a pretty smile' one says.
'you should wear tighter clothes, show off your legs...'
these women who watch Oprah every day at four.
my favorite episode is the one i turned off
before it even started.
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