Always the games. The dares.
He dared me to wear my mother’s wig to town,
To put her clothes on, and her shoes.
To chase my mother with a mummified rat,
And mock her swim stroke,
A fluttery gesture
That foretold sinking.
I wanted to be just like him.
Not like my mother, crying all the time.
I did it all, but he punished me for it.
Bad things happen to bad girls.
One day, I threw a frog into the lake,
Again and again.
I watched it swim to shore a hundred times.
Then, once, it didn’t.
What did I expect? I’d thrown it a hundred times.
I could never go back.
I would never be the girl who hadn’t done that.