Silver spoon.

I was born with a silver spoon in my mouth,
and a silver knife, and a silver fork.
I would complain about it—the spoon was not greasy,
it tasted like braces, my shining access
to cosmetic enhancement. And I complained about
the taste of my fillings in my very expensive
mouth, as if only my family was paying—
where did I think the rich got
their money but from everyone else?
My mother beat me in 4/4 time,
and I often, now, rant to her beat—I wear
her rings as if I killed her for them, as my
people killed, and climbed up over
the dead. And I sound as if I am bragging
about it. I was born with a spoon instead of a
tongue in my mouth—dung spoon,
diamond spoon. And who would I be
to ask for forgiveness? I would be a white girl.
And I hear Miss Lucille, as if on the mountain
where I’d stand beside her, and brush away the insects,
and sometimes pick one off her, sometimes
by the wings, and toss it away. And Lucille
is saying, to me, You have asked for enough,
and been given in excess. And that thing in your mouth,
open your mouth and let that thing go,
let it fly back into the mine where it was brought
up from the underworld at the price of
lives, beloved lives. And now,
enough, Shar, now a little decent silence.
Sharon Olds

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