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Sep 2013
My birthday is today
Seventeen years since another Sunday at 9 AM
On top of a mountain called Ozark
In a land that reminded me of Harry Potter
Called Pettigrew like Peter
It's forests elicited sprites and daddy long legs
Made of me a changeling then spit me back out

I learned what real ice tea was at the age of three
It was my birthday
Doing Pirouettes on my aunts Patio
Again, under Arkansas stars
With faery lights leading my way
I ascended to the brush behind the house
Got lost in the greens and browns of paradise's supply
Returned with flesh painted the colour of love

In an apartment overlooking crab apple trees
Fresh Canadian foliage fostering a well concealed creek
On a 90 degree angle over a dark chocolate cake
My ninth birthday
I drank pickle juice because Vinny said it was limonade
I wore dresses that year
And coveted baskets filled to brim with blossoms
Baked the crab apples into a pie
But preferred mama's banana cream
I wore bandages on my arms
and grass stains on my knees
My tears washed away like Crayola markers
And my biggest inner questions had to do
With what was for breakfast
And the lifespan of a temporary tattoos

14 came with a ******* bow
Done up gaudily in greys with a sad little smile
Three years marked with pink splotches and lines
A subject to hormones and arsenic tones
My birthday
A celebration of decay
And mama still sang, and baked, and kissed my face
And didn't wake when I placed cotton ***** in her ears
Because I was a happy girl

Today is my birthday
And mama exclaims
"No more babies! All four of you are so grown!"
But the mirror still illustrates an odd little show
With a baby face
A girls chest
And a womans hips
An ordinary freak all stitched up
Awkward and too much of everything
But not enough all the same
And inside I know
Is a sea of paradoxical Samanthas
Some stubborn and loud
Some shy and reserved
All with changes to make
Books to read
And places to go
And  only few that are quite wanting yet
To be 17
Written by
   agreenthrow, ---, Noah and Nat Lipstadt
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