recent poem

Good Girls Go To Heaven, Bad Girls Go Everywhere
(toward Mae West)

If good girls go to heaven, my name might have been
pinned on some angel’s coat or kite
flying over paradise. A circus dog would have jumped
on any obstacles the devil placed in my way
or licked my legs for some taste
of Christian spirit I’d picked up at Girls in Action
at the Baptist Church where I once laid
on a pew in the dark with an urge—
stronger than this poem or the devil knows—
to have my friend Dwana Kay pick me up
so for one brief night we might drive around town
and become bad girls to surprise our mothers
who might suggest we leave that town
where citizens would shake their heads
and give us up for the big top.

essay "Recovery" in Upstreet, issue #12
summer 2016