for Anne Sexton
I circle the bed, where the daughter
sleeps her hundred year slumber.
She bleeds. She is not a child.
Pricked by the thirteenth’s needle,
she sleeps the hundred year slumber
the twelfth fairy gifted her.
She was pricked by the needle,
and brought into womanhood.
The twelfth fairy gifted her
insomnia, rather than death,
and it brought her into womanhood.
As if numbed by Novocain, she has
insomnia. She is not dead.
I relish her beauty, her honeysuckle skin.
As if numbed by Novocain, she
lays frozen but not dead.
I relish her body, her honeysuckle skin.
I lay in the bed with my daughter.
She is frozen ― not dead.
I make her bleed. She is not a child.
Natalie Mattila recently graduated with a major in English and a minor in Creative Writing. She aspires to achieve her life-long dream of becoming an editor and best-selling author. She loves to read everything from Sarah Dessen to John Steinbeck. Her work has been published in Humid and Diagram.
Artwork: Jonny Ruzzo, “Briar Rose”