good luck charm (reversed)

i was born on friday
the thirteenth and baptized
on halloween four years later. spooky
girl, she-who-wears-black-and-not-much-
else. when i was small, i whispered little
prayers to jesus from my car
seat, staring out the window, please,
lord, make the rain
stop, as the drops fell
down in patterned rivers that i traced
with blue-white hands. when i was
sixteen, i found a cat dark as
night, talked her down from
a tree, so many leaves with so few
branches to cling to. she followed
me home, and the neighborhood boys
chanted, witch bitch, witch bitch. i
imagined them right, sending a curse
behind me. i imagined it working,
someday, please, lord, make me right
somehow. make me like those bully-
boys, who grew up to be
men with tailored suits and white teeth. sometimes,
i think of the doctor telling my mother,
do you want to wait a day, keep me
in utero till superstition passes.

 

Charlotte Covey is from St. Mary’s County, Maryland. She currently lives in St. Louis, and she earned her MFA in Poetry from the University of Missouri -St. Louis in Spring 2018. She has poetry published or forthcoming in journals such as The Normal School, Salamander Review, CALYX Journal, the minnesota review, Potomac Review, and Puerto del Sol, among others. She is currently a contributing editor for River Styx and teaches poetry for the MFA in Writing program at Lindenwood University.

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