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Cassandra Dallett
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The Playground

 

Cassandra Dallett

 

 

He fucked me through holes

in my fishnets

foxtails sticking my ankles.

My body dug in and moved

dirt.

My aunt and her guy’s

laughter higher and higher

on the swing set.

I always give it up too soon.

Didn’t have much to say,

my boozy quietness

an invitation

hands in my pants,

panties pushed aside,

I like this part.

The possibility of fantastic

when clothed pelvis’s rub

breasts sprung

and sucked hungrily.

Soon after he sank in

I wondered why

I hadn’t said no.

 

 

The Bitch

 

Cassandra Dallett

 

 

came out on my birthday

had a tantrum

in the pharmacy mirror.

The face looking back didn’t match

What she envisioned

A hip hop kid

fresh Adidas and lip gloss.

Instead

a tired somewhat grey-haired

thirty-nine-year-old

stared back.

Half-way dead.

I gave up on natural foundation

the thing I had come for

a compulsive splurge On my day

I grabbed up some perfume

cheerful even on old ladies

passed up the wrinkle creams

too much to admit

went home to my sweet, sweet man.

But the bitch wasn’t happy

dragged her face into the house

irritated with the mess he was making

while cooking her feast.

Anxious about his drinking

I tried to cover for her

show him the gratitude

he deserved.

He proudly brought out gifts and cake

But when he went to the store

she resurfaced

a little drunk

and getting uglier

insecurities rumbling up

falling through fault lines

She sat staring angrily at a movie called May

May wanted to eat her new boyfriend and girlfriend too

they pulled back bloodied stumps

from her smiling red mouth

The bitch started crying

Sick and afraid

that she was a  monster like May.

I wanted to turn it off

To change the channel and the mood

but she was glued

alcohol doing all the wrong things

snotty and tearful

when he returned with the garlic bread

I tried to clean her up

she didn’t leave

some parts of her remained

leaning through the door jambs

hating herself and me

tender breasts

worried PMS could be pregnancy

that she wouldn’t want the baby

she’d hate him for it

leave him like all the rest

that even garlic crab

and birthday cake

couldn’t make her happy

on my birthday.

 

 

 

 

    

In Prison

they called him Ojos de Leon.

 

 

Cassandra Dallett

 

 

He is beautiful

even in a dead drunk snore.

His skin velutinous, never needs lotion.

He looks through golden eyes half-blind

 intoxicating with their creeping greenness

and its contrast on black lashes.

 

He claims to tire of compliments but mentions all of them.

He resents love its conditions and its shortcomings.

It can’t change

his un-lovable-ness.

So he numbs it

with powder and booze.

He knows he will disappoint.

He knows that in the beginning

we will see him as we want

rippling muscle and tattoo

voluptuous lips

waist a tight v, ass round.

 

At first meeting he looks you dead in the eye.

Holds you.

His stare a dare

to see him through his blunts and bottles

his three kids and counting.

He is still settling to his own murky bottom.

There is intercourse in his look.

He’s sizing up the strength of your backbone

and like the lioness you will have to work for this.

 

But all you can do is wonder

if he’ll look at you like that

when you are underneath him

 sturdy paws around you

You imagine the moment his smooth chest

becomes ruddy

the tiniest goose bumps rising.

 

Motherless eyes say

you don’t know

the river

of pretty-broken-things

that runs beneath

this lion’s exterior.

 

 

 

 

 

Cassandra Dallett lives in Oakland, CA. She is mother to four kids and two Pit bulls. She finds them all loving and loyal, but says you never know when one of them will bite the mailman, or the Spanish teacher. When not cooking for her army she writes poetry and short stories of memoir. Cassandra has published in Cherry Bleeds, The Chiron Review, Yellow Mama, Gutter Eloquence, Ascent Aspirations, Criminal Class Review, Poetry Super Highway, Nibble, The Milvia Street Journal, and The Beat Museum of San Francisco.

 

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