Cold Water Women (version 3)

“I need a drink
of cold water,”
I mumble upon waking up.

Daddy shows me how
a scrunched-up straw wrapper
becomes a worm
under a dribble of cold water
on the table at Cracker Barrel–
look! how the fledgling
worm blossoms.
Little Katie laughs

In the shower with
my “male companion.”
He says
women blossom
under cold water.
Hard nipples and the like.
Katherine shivers.

Alone, and the
only cold water in the house
finds my strawberry clit.
Cold hands mangle fresh fruit under
cold water:
orgasmic raspberries
apple cores, darker than the artificial sweetness
I remember, bluesy berries,
bruised from so-called lovers’ hands.

If I’m going to swallow
this pill, please
get me a drink
of cold water.


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