I Am The Gingerbread Girl

January 26, 2009
By Hannah Vahle, Grand Island, NE

I am the gingerbread girl.
I run when no one’s looking.

My ponytail unfurls behind me,
streaming my mane into the autumn sky,
the dying remnants of summer
crackle beneath my feet.

My shoes have no soles, they’ve seen
too many sidewalks.

Suburban lawns stretch like a grin,
sprinkler heads rusting in their hovels.
Children’s toys strewn, bright plastic
against what was once the pride of husbands.
Soon snow will blanket them,
buried treasure for spring.

My heart, in my ears, keeps time
with the rhythm of my pounding feet.

Nighttime is falling, much earlier now,
streetlights flicker to life.
Houses, as familiar as the faces of the
neighbors who live there, look serene in the glow.
Only the trees wave as I pass, guardians,
silent monoliths of the yard.

My legs pump like pistons,
hot muscles scream.

My house rushes past, me ignorant of its presence,
salty sweat slicking my skin.
Breathing is a simple equation,
Air in, red, heat, pain out.
Life isn’t nearly so simple. I will run
forever, I am at peace.

You can’t catch me.
I’m the gingerbread girl.

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