you need another size up.
turn around. you feel cool
don't you? the mirrors blink
like big brothers.
you've never been inside a GAP before
& everyone here is clean.
lots of shoes with white soles.
you aunt is a sliver woman
with lots of knuckles & papery lips.
she's taking you shopping
so you can get older.
you love the orange pale flowers-print hoodie.
pull the hood
over your head & stuff fists
into pockets. now you're
a real hermit crab girl.
leave a thumb print on a mirror.
measure fat by the handful.
camo pants. she tells you to turn around.
crosses her arms like trestles.
on the street outside the wide shop windows
everyone carries a large shopping bag
with their heart at the bottom.
you think of the thrift store
where you usually go with mom.
there was a red shirt you loved
but it didn't quit stretch
over your stomach. shopping is
a series of bodily installations.
you are going to fifth grade next year
& you'd hoped to be smaller by then.
there's no use in looking
for too long or the mirror self
will start to get ideas. she brings you
more & more items. she brings you
a yellow dress that makes you feel
like a widening smudge & a pink top
with a purposeful hole in the side.
you notice her fingernails'
round even tips. little opaque
windows. she takes a smoke break
& you sit in the dressing room
avoiding all four of yourself.
you look at your soft pinkish lips
& your crooked jagged nails.
bite them down. spit the bits
on the navy blue carpet.
you'd like this to never end.