CARDIO ROOM, YOUNG WOMEN'S CHRISTIAN ASSOCIATION
You won’t know me. Any resemblance
to the woman I was is purely
agricultural. That fluff. A pink annual
given to low-born intemperate acts
unbecoming a modern person. No more.
I’m tough. Nothing
could eat me. No profligate billy
with a hacking cough, or that old goat
and his yen for plagues, floods and burning
fun places to the ground. Not you,
either. There was a time
I rolled like dough, plumped up
to be thumped down with artless yeasty
chemistry. Dumpling. Honeybun.
I sickened some. But evolved
in a flash, like the living flak
of a nuclear mistake. In space-age fabrics
I’ve moved more iron than a red
blood cell, climbing and climbing
the new world’s dumbest tower. I’m on
to this. Alongside the rest
I sweat it out with the smug one-party
affability of a sport utility vehicle.
Deceptively little cargo space.
Even covered in mud I look great.
From The New Canon: An Anthology of Canadian Poetry (2005) by Karen Solie.