my inside voice is sand buried
stuffed inside a styrofoam cup
and wrapped around on all sides by:

charts and graphs
401Ks and 403(b)s scattered across a landscape of
graphing calculator typos
LDL high and HDL low

the fibroids too big
to take out any of all the ways
medically induced menopause
pairing what will shrink with what will
keep me sane
while I wait

massage the arches, ice
the Pure Wave wand
plantar fasciitis

under all layers
I am still here
no longer the puling fool
determined to dig myself out

And yet, and yet.
I can still be reached by sounds, by songs
by the generous beat of a pause and look
glancing over a gesture that reminds me
of how simple desire used to be

my inside voice is screaming
look at me, screaming
I can still make you wither
with my words

Nobody cares
Especially me
But I can't help myself
As I fall asleep
Turn out the lights
Turn back the sheets
Say goodnight and turn me on
Turn out the lights
Turn back the sheets
Turn me on

and oh hell yes
turn me on
you 20 something
how can that even be a number
and crush this flap of will
left to cover the empty shrine
the Muse left empty
you will pull back the curtain
and have no idea what you're looking at

turn off the lights
turn down the sheets
and I could show you all
I dug myself out
that is worth your touch

The best way to get laughter at the end is to be a dirty old lady, right up until you're gone.

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