[Poetry] cheshire

cheshire cat

pupation in its many forms
comes not just once
in life

swaddled in, by stages,
our innocence dread anxiety
we morph
spurting caustic fluid from our pores

insect evolution unexplained

sometimes we bloom greyscale
in gentle shades of nothing
extraneous gradations mark passing of
our time

others blossom crimson
sword directed outwards
damocles subverted
and held against our foes
staving off our fears with bigot’s rage

bitter/sweet is rainbow birth
roy biv’s candescent burst
as flavor-rich as bertie’s beans

a vivid sheen so double-edged
that angry popes and postal votes
leave stamps upon your soul
identity discussed behind closed doors

did they ever care to know?

strangers grin and ogle
pluck bits like jacarandas
trample on your self-esteem

till all that’s left of you
are cheshire teeth

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