“daughter of what world” by Alexandra Kulik

daughter of what world

There was a man I saw on certain days,
at certain times, awoken from my sleep
into stockings with many holes my Greek
thick leg hair would poke through.
I called him Father. He spoke a foreign tongue.
I told him my name then he gave me blood.

I stood near Father on Easter’s Eve
dressed in a long white gown
and flower headband,
my nervous hands choking a tall wax.
He smelled thickly of sandalwood;
  when I closed my eyes he was only sandalwood.

Mother had been gushing all morning.
She’d say Alexandra, today you are the angel,
then pull my hair into a stricter bun.
There were other angels that day, perhaps,
but I only remember me and the way the plastic
inside my Mary Janes aggravated blisters.

I often dreamt, in those years, of a wizard
who’d appear in a peacock skirt and shoes
that tapped and parted the outer crust.

I’d imagine climbing giant legs and arms,
hanging from a tinsel beard upside-down
as my wizard pranced and soared the earth.
I’d imagine learning the world by its secret edges,
my eyes multiplying to thousands
in colors and shapes of kaleidoscopes.

Now, at 25 years, I’ve grown into my parts for good
and tonight, sitting on an old dog’s rug
I burn sticks of sandalwood,
drink sweet wine from a rusted spoon.
My hands join, then tire, then doze off.   
My gaze, too, which desired beyond a ceiling,
falls heavily down the wall—
    
    not knowing what to say, or, terrified
    He might really show up.

***

Alexandra Kulik is a multi-media artist in Chicago, IL. She lives with a cute dog and quite a few philosophy books. She is editor of the online publication Man in the Street Magazine, and you can find her poems in various places online.

 
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