A Portrait of Myself as Audrey Hepburn
by Hallie Chametzky
I’ve thought about telling them, you know,
that none of it’s a blessing or a diet or a trophy
that my waist wasn’t always so svelte that there were days when my
hands never stopped shaking
and that’s why they dance like spider legs now.
I felt my neck close in once from lack of use
last week someone compared it to a swan.
I’ve thought about saying
that when men from a neighboring country
put their children on trains to somewhere
where food becomes more coveted than a neck that bends at just the right angle
than a funny face, a lovely face
then they can idolize my bones which protrude through too few red blood cells
they can ruffle their feathers gracefully, delicately
delicately like breaking
delicately like crawling
delicately like my father on his deathbed having never lamented
the badges he wore and the thinness of dark eyed babes
with hollow spaces for stomachs
with craters for skin and no feathers in the winter.
My Hollywood arms bear luggage
which I may not unload into the pudgy, soft, unwrinkled hands of American celebrity.