My Fairytale Princess

Ma, I think you have enough

Of what you call “Hallmark poetry”

Telling you how you sacrificed

Your entire future for us

Ma, don’t you think I don’t appreciate it

I owe my existence to you

But details, little details

Make up the endless tapestry

Of us


I remember the time I spoke back

Rude little words from a suddenly rude girl

A child of five, impatient, angered

By your curt refusal of what I convinced myself

I needed

The look on your face, the whoosh

As your hand cut through the air to

Spank me for the first time


I remember your tear-stained face

Wetter than mine, more hurt than mine

As you came to say you were sorry

And told me I could hit your hand

As a consolation for you

Doing what was right

I remember best your hugs,

Both from that day and the subsequent years

Countless bear hugs enveloping me

So that I never felt



I remember the trips we made

Girls’ day out to the shopping centre

You watching me, praising me

Loving me

As I tried on clothes and more clothes

Persona after alternate persona

I never seemed to notice until much too late

That all you bought were for me

Not even a pair of new socks for yourself

Oh Ma, how could you love this selfish

Stupid and altogether too flawed girl



You wanted to handpick my formal dress

To layer foundation and lipstick

On my eager face yourself

To be a part of me growing up

Even though you couldn’t be there

That night

You wanted to know every single detail

Of my life, my friends

Even my love interests

You wanted a best friend, not just a daughter

And I wanted a best friend in my mother


I used to look up to you, Ma

Craning my neck to see your face

But urged by love and stretched by time

It seemed as though we’ve switched places


But do you know, Ma

You are still my fairytale princess

The one I wanted to be, but wouldn’t admit freely

My hero, the magnetism pulling me

Back home and

Back into unconditional love

The End

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