issue 9: june 2016, Poetry
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Rapture by The Girl Who Smells of Sunflowers

A middle school memory tossed next to homecoming jewelry,
or the debutante dress she always wanted me to wear, but it was never my style.
A crumpled veil from the dream wedding she never had,
the boxes of black southern femininity unopened, rest atop my shelf.

Sometimes I wonder what life would be like
If I told my mother that I wasn’t straight.
Would she look in my closet and ask, “what is wrong?”
What skeletons would she find?

Unrelenting in her search would she find my highschool yearbook
Look through the maps of pages, the handwritten doodles of classmates.

My mother always knew I was an artist, she encouraged it actually
So this would be nothing out of the ordinary,

Would she look through the portraits pinpoint
bisexual girl in my homeroom that I hung out after school with?

Would she ball her first and clench her chest to imagine
us kissing, or being hyper-sexual.

A painted thought from the online galleries of porn
My mother knows what
girls who like girls do…

How in reality we only exchanged letters of friendships and nothing more.

Would she trace from one end to another noticing
The lack of cutesy notes centered around school football player.
No Mrs. Such and Such, no scribbled messages of MASH
Or The uninterest in dating in general.

My mother tried to make a princess of me, but the expectations fit tightly on my head.
The tiara of beauty, glimmering too heavy so I shelved it.

Like an elementary capsule I,
Held all my secrets within, about the girl in my 3rd grade class with the jade eyes that made the song in my heart thump just a little louder. Or the middle school crush. Or all the pictures of Xena or Lara Croft.
She pulls my drawers, full of shirts from yesteryear
A neon color graphic t-shirt, ripped jeans, fishnet gloves.

Clothes she would toss aside the clothes / reminder that she would want me to be a bit more subdued.
A little more lace, something dainty, a little more southern belle.

Near my dresser a sealed box full of books
The stacks of manga gathering in the corner of the closet
Would she search the pages, with the girls who liked girls
Sailor neptune and Uranus fought for their love
Would she check my cd collection, look through the burned CDs

Or that Japanese music that has the crossdressers?
The posters of Gackt and Malice Mizer there were once sprawled on my walls.

Would she see a cracked compact?
I was never pretty enough to attract the attention of empty head boys
Would she find the angsty poetry book
Remnants of poems about A belly that grew and grew,
two dark circles under my eyes, too kinky hair
No relaxer could manage.
Would she find an imaginary pride flag folded neat by my underwear?

Something to bold for my black existence, a reminder of God’s promise
A tattered flag of sodom and gomorrah. A burned cape from fleeing from Leviticus scriptures. Would she cast holy water across my room?
Say a prayer over and over again so that God could hear her.

“Lord fix my daughter,” She would whisper amongst the rapture of my room.


The Girl Who Smells of Sunflowers is a 23 year old bisexual/questioning woman from the South. She is a Superhero enthusiast, subpar feminist, bad poet, foodie, a part of the Toonami Generation and tryna figure this life thing out. You can find her on instagram and twitter.

Illustration by Joy Miessi. She is an art maker based in London. Joy visually documents her day to day life, feelings and thoughts everyday on her website and her instagram.

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