Frida Kahlo Speaks:
Fidelity is a bourgeois virtue.
There are two Fridas, the one you want,
and the one you don’t want. You might
have thought I wore this white dress
for you, Diego, piled this hibiscus in my hair,
threaded azul chunks of sky around my throat.
But I did it for myself. I paint myself. Look
at me. I wear a necklace of thorns;
a hummingbird dangles between my breasts.
My heart is a bloody shrine trapped
in a corset of pain. But I will rise,
a Bird of Paradise. I will enter your body
like a jolt of caffeine. At last I have learned
that life is this way, and the rest is window-
dressing. I will carve Viva la Vida
on this watermelon, like a tombstone. I hope
the ending is joyful, and I hope I never return.
This poem was first published in Barbara Crooker's book, More, C&R Press, 2010.
Barbara Crooker is the author of eight books of poetry; Les Fauves is the most recent. Her work has appeared in many anthologies, including The Bedford Introduction to Literature, Commonwealth: Contemporary Poets on Pennsylvania, The Poetry of Presence and Nasty Women: An Unapologetic Anthology of Subversive Verse. www.barbaracrooker.com
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