Dress Up Cigarettes
Damn, I miss my cigarettes,
My own grown up type of dress up
Touching that white, smooth paper to my lips
Feeling the tingle crawl over my tongue
The burns scorch down my throat
Always with my red lipstick on,
At midnight with my hair neatly combed.
I could be a young Joan Jett, you know.
Or a Cherie Currie.
A 20s poet in France,
Maybe a Beatles hippie
A Chicago 40s mistress,
Why not a James Dean groupie?
I miss that experience of renaming me.
Miss the way the lipstick smudged against my fingers
And the filter tip
The way the smoke curled just right between my lips,
Then swirling out, twisting around in the dark empty house.
And all of me was pretty.
Gorgeous because the smoke was gorgeous
Breathing in the illusion of beauty.
And always the red lipstick,
And always the music,
For, why waste a good song by not having a cig?
Damn, how I miss it.
When I hear Led Zeppelin or Stevie Nicks,
When I take a walk at midnight and taste the wind
I miss my sweet dress up cigarettes.
Bruised flesh is hiding still,
Beneath long coal curls
And draping silk.
Rains of sorrow flood the fields.
And songs of dreamers haunt the hills.
Watch the child race toward the wood
To be embraced as children should.
Watch the widow mother slump along
To drunkenly beat the girl who’s run.
But watch the neighbors who do nothing more
Then stand at windows and lock the doors;
Knowing very well what every night becomes
Of the bleeding angel who must always run.
About the Author
Carolina Mata, preferring Caroline, attends Fresno City College. She wishes to receive an MFA in Poetry from California State University, Fresno. She has been published in the Fresno City Review (formerly, The Ram’s Tail) and aspires to teach college-level Creative Writing and publish many novels and much poetry.