Poem: We’re Not Allowed To Have Nice Things

Leg o' Mutton Sleeves

Leg o’ Mutton Sleeves

We’re Not Allowed To Have Nice Things

stop me
before i volunteer
again for tight rope walking
and twirling pistols in hot water

the lace from my bell skirt
catches the muzzle and pellets ping
underneath my leg-o-mutton sleeves

“perfect!” leaps from me like a Gatling gun
The s-bend corset digs in like trench warfare

the bust darts stiffen
with rigor mortis
incorruptible long
after favor has left my body

the flowing iron molding in my cheeks
flutter over the silver-grey mohair and gilt buttons

Mute is the only way to be

© 2017 Melissa Currence

This poem came from our Cincinnati East Poetry Meetup‘s prompt to write a poem that includes a phrase that you found interesting in your everyday life (like a line of copy from an ad, quote said by a friend, a phrase found in an email). I was most inspired by this post, Fashions of the 1890’s: Day Dress, on Vintage Victorian. See more about found poems from this prompt on Write Now Coach.

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