Where were you, nymphs,when I was learning to applythe proper plaster of Paris and papier-mâchéto fledgling cheekbones?Where a Nereid when I neededadvice on unguents?A dryad to calm my riotous nervesand dye my dulling locks?An oread to teach the ablutions of adoration?Sylph, you never paid the parson of insecurity—where were you when these petty hipstoppled the girlhood world?
Put on your face, little goddess.You’ll need it.Whittle yourself into shapebefore Pygmalion gets hereand raises high the pedestal. He’s not the kind we need.No thanks to you, it all turned out quite well.No more violin buying.My cardsharping days are through.I exfoliated all layers of despairand replaced them with voluble dew.At this age, I rely on my looks, exclusively.Don’t think I’ll send you my daughter.
—Patty Seyburn, “Where Were You, Nymphs?”Art Credit Iñigo Aragón

Where were you, nymphs,
when I was learning to apply
the proper plaster of Paris and papier-mâché
to fledgling cheekbones?
Where a Nereid when I needed
advice on unguents?
A dryad to calm my riotous nerves
and dye my dulling locks?
An oread to teach the ablutions of adoration?
Sylph, you never paid the parson of insecurity—
where were you when these petty hips
toppled the girlhood world?

Put on your face, little goddess.
You’ll need it.
Whittle yourself into shape
before Pygmalion gets here
and raises high the pedestal. He’s not the kind we need.
No thanks to you, it all turned out quite well.
No more violin buying.
My cardsharping days are through.
I exfoliated all layers of despair
and replaced them with voluble dew.
At this age, I rely on my looks, exclusively.
Don’t think I’ll send you my daughter.

Patty Seyburn, “Where Were You, Nymphs?”
Art Credit Iñigo Aragón

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