In the attic there lies neatly folded
pretty fripperies, mute evidence of someone I wanted
to be once upon a time.
Tarnished crown, plastic slippers, and
a storybook opened to a picture of a handsome prince.
Vision of a pumpkin smashed,
rats running havoc in my dreams, and
didn’t those slippers really shatter as if glass?
So many doors opened, so many slammed shut.
Too many imposters selling the wrong fairy tale
and nobody lived happily ever after.
I gave up.
Packed away the frills, gave the princess
walking papers, and looked every frog
in the eye and proclaimed him suspect.
Until I saw a face in the mirror looking over my shoulder.
She still looks the same after all these years.
She leads me up to the attic and smiles
while I dress myself in tattered finery, rub the
tarnish from my crown, and rush
to open yet another door.
Deborah Decker 1/5/2012