Dancing Girl

Nothing is so enormous as mother. Mother, who stares and waits for me to dance. Well, I won’t dance. I stick to my room. There is no place to go, though I wanted a job in the conveyor belt hamburger restaurant. Here is too clean. My sister is friends with smokers who stand by the river eating lo mein and drinking beer from Freddy Whiteread’s with the messed-up jaw. I stay home. I dance in the corner with little pink kicks. And when the door creaks, I throw myself against the wall ‘til mother peels me with the grease in her voice saying, go outside, it’s nice. Outside the day is always nice. It’s inside that I am a fish from the bleached barrier reef. I flap across the floor. The eyes for my mother are shy eyes, are little cool eyes. She will not see me happy.

Kim Hagerich is a poet, fiction writer, and intermittent bookmaker, currently living in Japan. Her writing has appeared in CutBank, Invisible Ear, and The Conduct of Bees in the Buckwheat Season.