the photograph

A photograph sits upon my shelf.

Stays upright; proud of itself,

Both alike and unlike myself.

A black and white filter

Atop this grained, old picture.

A vintage look; a perfect mixture.

All the splendour displayed up there

But the colour still is worse for wear.

All my guests will stop and stare.

Black and white was my intent.

To hide my personal discontent

With words that only they’ll invent.

Dilutes the spark; mutes the wild.

Masks the mad for meek and mild.

All they’ll see – my tainted smile.

They’ll come to think I am too much.

At least, I think, there is nonesuch

Akin to my gentle, yet fiery touch.

But still, I know I cannot be

That fiery woman; the sweet debris.

So, I will become The Nobody.

Appease this world, frail young girl.

Pick up your skirt, put on the pearls.

Or, to you, their shame they’ll hurl.

Ashamed of the way they live their lives.

Filing themselves in archives,

And coming for women like us with knives.

I am the photo on my shelf.

Black and white; not proud of self.

Reject my need to be myself.