What princesses do by Holly York

What princesses do

Not just any princess, mind you
but a real fairy princess from back
before it was all monetized
who didn’t begin as a princess
at all–just a girl
reaching for perfect at school
at home making her bed and not
teasing little sister
too much.

Someone will notice
the godmother will come
the prince will come.
She will be crowned.
Even though she’s too tall
and has scabs on her knees

With silver foil and cardboard
She is crowned.

What do princesses do?
Dad, handing her a scepter
he has lovingly
fashioned with plywood scraps
from the floor of the workshop
Princesses rule.
And she does,
sitting straight in her little girl chair
smiling at subjects invisible.


Holly York lives in Atlanta, Georgia with husband Martin and two Doberman puppies. A black belt in karate, masters swimmer and former competitive runner, she is at work on her first collection of poems titled My Knees are on their Last Legs: laments of an aging athlete.


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