New Year – Lily Myers

At midnight H and A and I clink plastic cups and drink to the Year of the
Independent Woman. At 12:30 we’re outside and smoking a broken cigarette I taped
together with packing tape and I am seeing H cry for the first time in our eight-year
friendship and it is a boy and he is a jerk and I hear myself saying things like they are
just so immature. The girls bum another cigarette and leave and I yell after them we
can’t let them take anything away from us. C comes over and I pull his hair and I
think it’s just cause I want to touch someone or be looked at and S says back to the
summer of 2011, huh, L? and my body zaps closed and remembers the summer I felt
soft and inconsequential, C’s body in my brother’s old bed after we’d lost our
virginity to each other and he said so can I leave now? And how I always want to feel
I can leave these things behind completely but sometimes they show up in the
strangest moments like when I am way more drunk than I thought because I had a
cherry cider, a Dark & Stormy, two beers, two rum and cokes, and then another
beer, plus three cigarettes not including the one taped together with packing tape.
And so I almost go home but C and S say you’ll regret it so I tag along to their place, a
few feet behind, quiet, drunk, heels clicking on the sidewalk, up over the highway
overpass and stopping at a 7-11 when S says Papa wants a new pack of smokes and
he has lipstick all over his face from where we wrote feminist on his forehead but
the letters have rubbed off and H said he has fucked every one of my friends and
treated them terribly
and S still knows he’s the most charming bastard in the place,
and the only nice boy in the room is the one I don’t talk to at all, the one I kiss
chastely at midnight, look at shyly, then turn back to my plastic cup, raise it up to the
ceiling with my decaying tattooed arm and say this, oh this will be the year.

Lily Myers is a writer, feminist and witch from Seattle, Washington. She graduated from Wesleyan University, where she competed on the slam poetry team and won Best Love Poem at the 2013 College Unions Poetry Slam Invitational for her poem “Shrinking Women”. She blogs about self-love, healing, feminist spirituality, goddess badassery, and dismantling the patriarchy on her blog The Shapes We Make. Her debut novel, a coming-of-age story about family and body image, is due out from Philomel in 2017. She loves the rain, vegan pizza, libraries, and Tarot. Follow her on Twitter and Instagram, both at @lmyerspoetry.

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