Tools By Amy Lauren


Constructing a home for my body
with the oppressor’s tools –

softening what is hard,
firming what is soft,

highlighting the wideness
of my eyes and the length

of the lashes, their darkness,
drawing lines on some curves

and casting shadows on others—
almost like any Southern lady spotted

on her husband’s arm at the opera,
clinging to him with wobbly heels–

but only altering aspects I choose,
skin unapologetically expanded,

as if Venus sculptured herself
for the woman who might unveil her,

relishing the chisel on marble,
relinquishing no inch for any man’s eye,

sculpting with my own two hands
with the only tools that fit my hands,

with what tools
my hands can afford.

By Amy Lauren


Amy Lauren is an organist in Jackson, MS and recipient of a Pushcart and Best of the Net nomination in 2017. Her chapbooks include Prodigal (Bottlecap Press) and God With Us (Headmistress Press), the latter through the semi-finalist prize in the Charlotte Mew Contest.

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