Patricia Carragon

The Ballad of Lucy Jordan

                              At the age of thirty seven
                              She realized she'd never ride
                              Through Paris in a sports car
                              With the warm wind in her hair
                                —Shel Silverstein, sung by Marianne Faithful

Years ago,
she walked through Paris,
with the wind rustling through her hair.
As she crossed the Champs-Elysées,
she never knew
the reason why
men in sports cars whistled.
It took years to learn
that testosterone didn’t care
about her looks or intelligence.

Now past the age of thirty-seven,
she realized
that the nature of men
deceives and humiliates.
The Big Bad Wolf
took Red Riding Hood
out to dinner,
demanded payment in return.

She couldn’t forget
how the King of Hearts
knocked down
her House of Cards,
leaving the Ace of Hearts
crying in the rubble.

On a humid Brooklyn night,
she planned to take her life.
But she couldn’t tolerate
his sinister laughter
beating inside her head.
She pushed his memory
off the roof instead.

As sirens passed by,
the Ace of Hearts
stopped crying.
His last text,
unread and deleted.

Patricia Carragon’s recent publications include Bear Creek Haiku, First Literary Review-East, A Gathering of the Tribes, The Café Review, Muddy River Poetry Review, Poetrybay, and Sensitive Skin. Her latest books are The Cupcake Chronicles (Poets Wear Prada) and Innocence (Finishing Line Press). Patricia is the curator/editor-in-chief of Brownstone Poets.