For Junior Miss,
a little black dress coming off
led to a big white dress going on,
making her a Senior Missus.
When she birthed the babe
who’d been not so immaculately-conceived—
courtesy of her sophomoric husband—
she felt like a freshman soldier,
ill-equipped to fight in the mommy wars.
The magical childhood Petey’s mother had given him
had been one of the toothless tooth fairies
who sold the teeth of children on the black market,
of Santa Claus having to give up his life as a clockmaker
to duplicate & deliver toys to the children of the world
as part of his eternal life sentence for taking candy from a baby,
& of the Easter bunny who identified as a chicken—
so much so that he donned a rabbit skin & laid the eggs
that hatched those disgusting little things known as Peeps.
So maybe Petey’s childhood wasn’t so magical after all,
but then, his mother was no Houdini.
was the cool family friend
who was warmly welcomed,
for it housed
the daughter’s culinary art projects,
the son’s junk science experiments,
& Mom’s wine—
the beer being the antidote to the office,
the antidote to everyone at home.