Poetry Trauma

sick little girls by Kristin Garth

“We’ve got a sick little girl – we’re just trying to take care of her.” Jamie Spears

“My client has informed me that she is afraid of her father,” Sam Ingram, attorney for Britney Spears

My father threw chairs, said prayers, beat me
until I begged, hands wandering between my legs,
controlled each penny I received, worried
only how he was perceived — not by the dregs
at public school — by saints upturned lips
would fool, also my Laura Ashley dress,
too snug against my breasts — can’t help but glimpse
the way they shudder as the lungs suppress
the shrieks of a violent distress of
the sickest little girls, minors they can hide
away from the world, legally, even call love,
with padded rooms and rubber gloves, statewide
commitment takes two relatives to sign.
Threat I’ll outgrow though Britney remains confined.

Kristin Garth is the author of seventeen books of poetry including Flutter Southern Gothic Fever Dream, The Meadow and Candy Cigarette Womanchild Noir.  She is the Dollhouse Architect of Pink Plastic House a tiny journal and has a weekly sonnet podcast called Kristin Whispers Sonnets.  Visit her site and talk to her on Twitter @lolaandjolie