by Diana Kurtz


She loses herself in the tin-colored picture postcard
Of her life, or what she thought it to be.
Cut up blue jean novelty, not from vanity, but from the razor edges–
The winding paths of choices.
Got too close to the edge.
Cigarette hanging by a thread.
But still hanging on.

Used up paper wrappings
Around a shell
She cuts to scream aloud
So self-absorbed is she in self-pity.
Even the cigarette ashes on the floor don’t notice.

She is nothing, no voice, body not worth unwrapping.
Sinks into the invisibility of bed
And drifts away,
Hoping the nightmare of non-existence comes true.

Where do you find your worth
Paper girl?
A picture postcard of false serenity
Masking the darkness lurking inside.
Where do you go to,
Paper girl?
When the world’s a kaleidoscope of dreams?

Can you take this still life
And make it something worth feeling?
Life may send you to places unbidden,
But don’t you give up
In chasing that next destination.

Where did you go to, Paper girl?
Lost in someone else’s memory?
Where did you go to,
Paper girl?
In that tin-colored picture postcard
Frozen in time.
Waiting for someone
To read you.