I’ve been a not-so-serious girl, a pleasure to teach,
avant garde save this sink plug and plastic lavender on chains
around my neck.
I’ve been a comedy performance, a holed-up critique of the teenage girl,
a series of vignettes about the same self-esteemed mistakes flummoxed
in the grim light after staring back at the pale, watery eyes of the male gaze.
I’ve been a starfish splayed on pool tiles, lovely and utterly sun drunk.
I’ve been a clutch of flowers balled in a fist, a recommended song
sitting filing my nails into pixels on a playlist
or a desperate obsession for a thigh gap like a medieval conquest.
I’ve borne the flame of intensity carried like kindling in my weak-willed heart:
easily pleased, easily gullible, easily lit up by our own frail stars.
Why wait until retirement to study those winking glints of inferno?
We carry so much of their gaseous chuckles in our own pockets,
our minds, further afield. Our music, our taste, to touch and know
we are stuffed with the hope that humanity can at least be honest.
I’ve been a graceful endeavour, a stifled laugh, never regretful
of the blaze of it all, this inferno of desire.
Olivia Burgess is an 18 year old word chef raised and residing near London, England. Her poetry usually revolves around her deep admiration of nature, the frailty of humankind, or her muse, who shall remain unnamed. Soon embarking on an English degree, she has been published in over 20 micro press avenues. When she's not composing poetry she likes to walk dogs, cook, and stare at the moon. She hopes you take care of yourself today.