Nothing to Lose by Heather MacKechnie

Nothing to Lose
by Heather MacKechnie

Dating boys was easy, I learned the tricks far too young
And boys became men as I taught my barbies to kiss
Imagining how different the soft curves of a woman might feel
Neath my fingertips, my hungry lips, my aching heart.

Effortlessly easy as saucy smiles, too short skirts, and barbie doll hair
Drew them near.  Drunk with the power of knowing
They always wanted it more than I, who did not want it at all.
It’s easy to win the game where there’s nothing to lose,
But yourself.

First was the pain, so sharp I was certain my body would split into a million jagged shards, 
In the end it was intact, though my soul slipped away, infinite droplets of crystalline fragments.
Yet somehow I would still live to wonder why people called it making love
There was no love to be found, only the sharp staccato edges of a fuck.

Power was a gift that came later, born of the treacherous words, 
dripping like honey from pink glossy lips (the lips that I most longed to kiss)
Meant to show me my place and drown me in shame, but defiant I claimed my power
The slut….The whore….The Fuckable Cunt

Boys faded to men, every one taking credit for the innocent smile of a child,
Framed by tender soft skin, raw from sandpaper chins of fully grown men.
Not seeing desire, they thought they inspired, lay hidden behind eyes closed
Lost in dreams of sweet lips and the soft supple curves of the women I hadn’t yet met.

Dating men was easy, with each carnal thrust convincing them of their own power,
As time and again they took what they wanted, not seeing it had long since been lost
Abandoned, forgotten in darkness, preciously held by dirty remnants of a first training bra
As empty as the abandoned train station that had long since stopped waiting for passengers.

Smiling, I knew I held the power, to get what I needed, to stay or to go.  
In the end I always left, tho they begged me to stay, 
the moment my freedom started slipping away.  
I left every time, carefree and easy
They still, every one, wanted it more
Than I, who did not want it at all.

Lost in the dreams of imaginary lovers, immune from all heartache and shame.
Unaware when at last I succumbed to desire, the soft curves I craved, my undoing.
No longer shielded by the cold empty safety, of one who has nothing to lose, 
My heart learned to soar with love and desire; then bleed from the heartache 
of being the one, who wanted it, so very much, the one who wanted it all.

Hear Heather MacKechnie recite the poem on the Viewless Wings Poetry Podcast:

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Heather MacKechnie is a queer aspiring poet who spends her days in non-profit management and delights in evenings of music, writing and solitude. She has been writing since she could grasp a pencil but until recently seldom shared her written words with anyone else.

Instagram: @charliemack1374

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