The Woman Who Was All Used Up
from Livid Among the Ghostings
© Anna Percy, 2013

First pluck out your eyes
no longer see lascivious stares or sneers
men pantomiming your breasts
on their own flat chests:
your fault for having a comical body
for being other
your eyelashes were likely to be too pale and short
and the iris not the startling uniformity of contacts.
 
Van Gogh both your ears
no longer hear men clamouring
for your attention
trying to persuade you into car seats
no longer hear bitch when you don't respond
no longer hear the latest ad for ridding yourself
of those unsightly underarm wrinkles.
 
Take off your breasts
that outward provision of femaleness
an abundance
a lack
not enough in common with silicone.
 
Lock your cunt up in a box
nothing left to grope
or aim for between the legs
then unscrew those legs at the hip joints
those shapely ankles
those thighs
always too much in the thigh
the wrong texture
all that hair
those visible veins
the beastliness of a functioning body
pumping away growing hair
oxidising exuding odours
shedding skin cells
modern beauty is stasis.
 
Feel strange men breathe down your neck on the bus
flay yourself
save on your make up bill.
 
Remove all that lovely adipose tissue
curved muscle
dismantle the skeleton
those sexy bones beloved of billboards
and leave only:
those ugly pumping veins and the unnoticed brain.