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How It's Supposed to Be
She drew a picture of her family
in her kindergarten art class and it had
her mom and her dad with
big cherry red smiles on their faces
showing how great the world is,
and they hung it on the wall,
a statement of how her family was supposed to be.
She danced in a recital
when she was ten years old,
spins and twirls executed precisely
but only her mother showed up
to watch her grand performance.
Her dad was working late again,
but her mother filmed every move she made
as she and her dance class paraded on stage.
Her mother promised they would watch it together,
which was how it was supposed to be.
She acted in the school play
when she was thirteen years old,
where she and her crush were secret lovers.
Her head spun with the butterflies
that invaded her body, as they recited
lines of longing, and lust, and love.
She ran home to tell her parents
only to find her mom in tears,
while fighting with her dad.
But her mom wiped away her tears
and her dad put on a smile.
They listened to her story of this boy in the play
and she thought that maybe things
will stay how they are supposed to be.
And she wrote a poem
when she was sixteen years old.
About how everything had changed.
About her dad putting miles between them,
and her mom's tears over it,
and the empty feeling she got every night.
And she searched for that picture,
with the family who had
cherry red smiles
who made a statement about
what life should be like
and she wondered
who are they supposed to be?