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Fifteen

by Kathleen Spivack


she skulked
round her parents' house for hours;
her father
was suddenly hateful, the smell
of him in the bathroom,
there, when she entered:
she gagged.

her mother: nervous,
quarrelsome, all
their familiar habits,
evening, oppression, and
she stretched, she tried
to breathe, she talked
to her friends on the telephone

pleading:
release me from family.
eat, her mother said.
she dug at her cuticles: how
her breasts ached, pushing outward
like little wings. 

 

Kathleen Spivack is the author of the following collections of poems: Flying Inland, Doubleday, 1973, The Jane Poems, Doubleday, 1974, and Swimmer in the Spreading Dawn, Apple-wood Press, 1981. She directs the Advanced Writing Workshop, Cambridge, Mass. (4/1981)


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