Gordon Kippola

 

Cinderella Fellow

There’s no doubt we lived a fairy tale marriage.

Cinderella was my cross-gender avatar. I was  

script-flipped when my Princess metamorphosed

into a Stepmother of exquisite wickedness.

 

We were denied natural offspring, despite wizard visits,

and three clomid wishes. Spouse-cursed, I was demoted

to scullery maid, while favored cats played

the roles of haughty step-daughters.

 

Each failure to assert a Monarch’s will shrunk

my box’s dimensions. My regretted wedding

web became thickset. My silent compliance

kept a brittle peace, keeping her tongue

banked to a blistering smolder.

 

My villainess became Sister Grimm for our story,

recasting herself as exasperated mother burdened

by the curse of an idiot boy on her blameless back.

 

I did make it to The Ball, playing Belle

a time or three, my domestic servitude

broken by flamboyant magic words

from a mortal analog Fairy Godmother.

 

Evil Stepmom had no comeuppance; she didn’t die,

profiting from happily-never-after as years slip by.

 

One more bit of trivia: truth be told,

the thing about glass slippers? They’re hard and cold.

Nowhere Prayer

 

Given that my life was built on notions

of reciprocal communication,

a listener would have been convenient,

bordering on essential, one could say.

Would say. Not that self-talk is valueless,

I’d never make that argument. I do

recall witnessing those praying out loud,

seeming quite sincere: not the sort to lie.

Was I seeing polished performances,

or fantasies of fervent moral loons?

Or did God turn his face away from those

predestined to skepticism? I shared

youthful agonies with my creator.

Vacant heavens diffused my stumbling speech.

 
 

THE COURTSHIP OF WINDS

© 2015 by William Ray