She has grown out of herself – Candice Louisa Daquin


The girl, the gash, the glory

she was once even referred to as happy whore

sinister slut, fake good girl

the girl of multifaces

is no longer a girl

she has grown out of herself

the sharp thorns of her virginity

long bled

she is now a woman of dubious age

standing on the hemmed periphery of other girls with elastic limbs

their body language leans away, saying; she is no longer their sister

(they whisper, they whisper)

an aging divide

four and five, divide by nine

long multiplication

she has been subtracted out

something about the lines in her eyes

she’s not one of us, they say in collective pollen count

coming together like a quilt

leaving her to wade out into flat water

only five years ago, only less than that

when she had a full head of bright hair and nimble back

she somersaulted in their field

picking irises

and they did not bat an eye

she was under the radar

nar, nar, nar!

old enough to be mother to some

those angry girls with tight biceps and lungful of words

but they did not detect

the softening of her cleavage

the jello in her thighs singing its spring bulb

they only saw her pretending

thought her good enough and one of them

til the sickness left its indelible mark

a red hand print covering her left eye

the one she could not see well from

(Premature macular degeneration, you may lose your sight, the optician gleefully sung)

turning her with its yellow dusted baptism

honest to her guilt of years lived

I am four and five not divided by nine

I smell different to you

this is what men sense when they sniff around us like

wolves come from rain storm

instinctively keening toward the coltish and fawn

as we who are older turn like wine

another vintage they have no taste for

she could fool them well but did not, after her visit to Hades

wish to pretend to be a girl anymore

only a woman could have survived

and it was stamped as surely as Ash Wednesday

a third eye

the slow drain of life began

she saw it first in her hands, then her mouth

it did not so easily tell stories

when Spring came, they knew her truth

without saying anything, left her out

of their Mayday circle

all the light-footed snow rabbits and their daisy chains

now when she tried to join in

they circumvented her, like

she was a parent, a teacher, an elder

with respect, but no thought given

of her pattered exclusion

maybe she did the same, when she

had such halo radiance

just as boys turn to men and wish

to scoop up girls and remain

ever held in youthfulness

she saw her own extinction

in their slow passing over her gaze

she was becoming invisible

first her hair, then her arms, then her feet

gone into deep water and not returned

she swam out to the lighthouse

where piercing rays caught

undulated water like a lovers stroke

and by fevered spray of waves against rock

stared at her future like chain and ball

why does a woman have?

first the pummeling of her elders

constraining her flight?

then reigned condemnation of those

wishing to corset and divide

and finally, as she ages

the talisman of wisdom enveloping her

an unspoken rejection by her own sisters

who think themselves invulnerable

far removed, not tainted yet by

her approaching wither

til the only one left to speak

is her own voice

and in unblemished muslin sky

she becomes a single long tail bird

seeing everything

from on high

that lonely place

of insight and exile

how she longs still

to be pulled into the sewn circle

embraced by her daughters and shimmering girls

given the crown of daisies

led whirling and laughing

around mosaic may pole

like a girl who has remembered

her life before she was born

again clasping the soft hands

of future

fearful of nothing

in the rawboned bosom of her sisterhood

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12 thoughts on “She has grown out of herself – Candice Louisa Daquin

  1. We have made of it an awkward age, this middle time, knowing not quite what to make of it, this time between the girl who is past and the wise elder magic weaving crone not yet fully evolved. Now, perhaps is the time to wear more purple.*

    *”But maybe I ought to practice a little now?
    So people who know me are not too shocked and surprised
    When suddenly I am old, and start to wear purple.”
    [from “Warning” by Jenny Joseph]


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