WARDROBE BEST DRESSED: NATALIE SHAPERO’S “ORANGE ON THE NAIL”

Orange On the Nail

 

Whatever is said to mate for life, doesn’t. Science once was awful

at telling birds apart, took any speckled hen in the nest

for the same one every time. Now we know more.

                                                                                         See the shop

where the model girls are ugly. This only happens at one store,

 

and every time I’m there they offer me work. I say I work already,

and they say where, as though I’ll soon be stolen. The fitting attendant

is angry in sandals, kicking her toes.

                                                              LOOK AT THIS COLOR, IT’S WRONG.

IT’S PEACH IN THE BOTTLE, she says. PEACH IN THE BOTTLE, ORANGE ON THE NAIL.

 

Is this where we’ve gotten to? Have I hurt you? Have I made

accusations from the other side of a stall,

                                                                    put you in mind of stone

fruit grown in glass? Of seed fruit and a spike? And what about the cigarette

on the subway stairs, still going? Everyone avoids it, wishing not

 

to stamp it, cheering the burn as I have cheered a family animal no one

could put down. Such is our religion. We raise kids in it and cry when they sleep

with heretics. Striding neighbors

                                                         beg us stay together. I can’t

remember school. Once I returned to the college I’d left

and found that I knew no one.

                                      I slept on the floor of a lab for making ears.

The guard woke me: HOW DID YOU GET IN? I told him I WAS A RUNNER,

THEY NEEDED A RUNNER. I TRAINED ALL SUMMER. MY EVENT WAS HURDLES.

 

“Orange On the Nail” appeared in Natalie Shapero’s book, No Object, available from Saturnalia Books. Purchase your copy today!

 Natalie Shapero is the author of No Object (Saturnalia, 2013), and her poems have appeared recently in The AwlCopper NickelPinwheel, TYPO, and elsewhere. She lives in Gambier, OH, where she is a Kenyon Review Fellow. 

 This week’s Wardrobe Best Dressed was selected Lyric Dunagan. Dunagan is the Development Assistant at the Sundress Academy for the Arts and a graduate of the University of Tennessee. She was awarded the Bain Swiggett Poetry Prize in 2013, and has been published in The Volta’s Evening Will Come. She is currently waiting to hear back from various MFA programs and hopes to begin graduate school in Fall 2014.

sundresspublications
Latest posts by sundresspublications (see all)

Leave a Reply