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glass (1).jpg
Photograph by Monique Rardin Richardson

Pieces of Me 

by Monique Rardin Richardson

Questions—the adolescent years

filled with questions.


Not ordinary, angst-ridden,

social engaging, juvenile



No, mine centered on a man.


Where was he?

Did I look like him?

Did he love me?


In the days of seeking Easter eggs

through grape and squash vines,

chased by chickens and geese with

a Siamese cat named Gumdrops,

I was fooled to believe what was in

front of me was truth.


In the search for answers, I found

what I thought was missing in front

of a bar with dirty blonde hair,

a swollen red nose, and dark circles

under his pale blue eyes.

He resembled a swamp rat

dripping wet from the rain.


And before I could release my words,

he had a demand for me…


I want you to change your last name.


The question of "who" was replaced

with "why", as I stood on the sidewalk

underneath the dampened moonlit sky,

now—in severed pieces.

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