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Cartwheel photo


I am afraid of a heart
above a head, inversion
willing erasure, the body
surrendering to gravity, violence
a chance some call skill
but only because a girl is great
when she risks broken
like my arm wrapped in cast 
for Swan Lake—everyone says 
how fitting a boy pushed me 
so that I could better fly.
Daddy teaches giving up
for girls desperate to spiral
to nowhere, but he doesn’t know
how to leave the ground
never yielded himself 
though he says I’m not trying
hard enough, nothing is
impossible and girls don’t cry 
for mad, only sad, cracks his belt 
to make my bad disappear
and when I am breathless bent,
the air from the lash,
head over heart, I erase
myself until it is over,
lift my head as if my hands
like cartwheel, like victory,
like my body finally knows
what it means to soar.


image: Alexas_Fotos