A Better Sort of Princess

by Laura Voivodeship

The dress I wear is vague and full
of smoke. I fan myself out;
I’ve practiced this manoeuvre

a thousand times before. Stripped down,
I count the mirrors that rip me open.
My body is a triptych, crowded in

these shifting skins. Impossible enough.
Make me up, make me thin, cut me right
down the middle. I am stubborn. I don’t

meet my own eyes. For a long time
the mirror stopped telling the truth.
I hurled everyone I knew into a corner

so that I could dance alone. I am a work of art,
wrought out of glass tragedies. I am
of the earth. My ugliness never occurred

to me. I was on the side of the wolves.
The hours are finished with me but
I won’t bend. I will drop. It will be easy.

Behind me: the forest, silver and deep.