Nothing more than a beaten baby,

fleeing down the aisle in my

virginal gown of naivety.


He wore my hope proudly.

Pinned to his chest like a

red rose boutonniere.


Concluding whispers of the

tired and disillusioned

pursue me as I try to prove them wrong.


Oh! Oh, no. I’m not

the stereotype of predictable

failure to thrive.


Through gritted teeth, I

learn to duck

and stay up late


Learning the dangerous buttons

and resisting the desire

to push them.


With a light step and a

careful eye, I execute

years of delusional bliss.


Life inside a Stepford skin

wore down the glorious

angles of imperfection:


my birthright and bliss.

She came with a dagger

forged in the ecstatic


flame of unexplainable


Immediate love. Fierce


unexplainable connection.

She cut through the skin

freeing the woman. I


was meant to be.

Always was. Hidden

brief and singular,

willful and ignorant,


But no more! She


rescued me. And I

rescued her. And

I am she, and


she is me.


by Rachel Holbrook


Rachel Holbrook writes from her home in East Tennessee and is anxious to leave her mark on the literary world. She was previously unpublished.

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