In my mother’s kitchen nothing matches
There are broken things
The washing machine, stove
The oven doors and their latches
The table is round and old
And there are corners of dust and mold
The cabinets have overflowed
And dishes stick out here and there

My mother doesn’t care
She does not cry over spilt milk
She does not regret a life of burlap
And wish for silk

My mother is not me

I dream of high English tea
I dream of fine, soft things
And everything else I imagine wealth brings

My mother works in a soup kitchen
A couple of days a week
My mother eats like a bird
Putting little crumbs in her beak
My mother loves to get on her knees
Or jump to her feet in church

I like to sit on the edge of the velvet seat
I just perch
And wait for the coffee hour
Where there might be attractive boys
Who will notice my sexual power
That is why I love church
Because I can dress up
And still feel divine

My mother’s motives are so different
Than mine

I dream of a house that smells of home-baked bread
And jelly in a jelly jar made of glass with no lead
I dream of fountains overflowing in beautiful light
Like Lincoln Center or Versailles at night

I don’t care if the SDS is fighting for its rights
I don’t care if Gloria Steinem helps women all around the world
In their collective plights

I just dream of my prince and my castle
I definitely would rather be a princess than a vassal

But even better
I want to be a vessel
I want magic energy to pour through me
And to nestle in my heart
I want to be beautiful
I want to make art
I want to wear amazing dresses
I want to be the icon everyone blesses
Or even curses
As long as I live
I want to speak in poetry
And live in verses

I want to be even more than a vessel
I want to be unique
I want to be special
I want to stand out
But I still want to fit in

I want my kitchen to sparkle
And I want to have perfect skin
I don’t want to feel guilty
Or afraid or ashamed
I don’t want to be full of resentment
I don’t want to blame my parents
I just want to shut out my memory
Of that kitchen
And its dirty floor

I want to have clean sheets
I want to have a house at the shore

I know my parents gave up a lot
But was it really for me
Could I have signed a contract with them
When I really didn’t agree

My god is a god of beautiful things
My god doesn’t think it’s wrong to love diamond rings
My god is kind
And rich
My god is able to love me
Even when I’m being a bitch
My god loves designer clothes

And my god already loves what I love
And already knows that I am right
At least for myself
And gives me permission
To match my kitchen
And have beautiful things
On my shelf

© 2021 Julie Flanders
Photo Credit: Stockimo/
April is Poetry Month Day 27


About octoberprojectmusic

Julie Flanders Marina Belica Emil Adler
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