The Dollhouse

Photo by Brady Knoll on

This is an old poem. I wrote it about a place at a camp where we volunteered at to do work in for several months in the Redwoods. The girls lived in this ‘cabin,’ called “The Dollhouse,’ which inspired the poem. It’s my little good-bye to my dear friend who is retreating back into the woods to do forestry work for the season. Here’s a little walk down memory lane…

The Dollhouse

Melba toast hangs off the cliff of the fridge.
Flood buckets wait by the chimney.
There are enough televisions to cradle
even the deepest voyeurs indifference to sleep.

The stairs are carpeted in a lime green shag rug
Begging for cigarette burns,
Branded by disgruntled pumps.

Here girls crochet strands of prayers
Into poem blankets
That warm the interior of the vacated walls,

They recycle innocence and newspaper
In blue binds marked accordingly

The spiders braid webs for the little girls
Who sit combing through their snarled hair.

Outside you’ll find moonlight and pine,
Inside they’re there too,
They dance, draw, mystify, scare.

It is quiet as woodshed on a snowy evening,
Never appearing to be what it is.

Everybody wants it to be all “teanparties,
Martha Steward Living, American Girls,”

But it’s not. It’s fast-
There’s a cocaine table in the corner,
A lost virginity roaming around upstairs.

You expect sugar and spice and everything nice,
But there are pins, needles, voodoo dolls,
And libidos hungrier then wolves in the night.

These girls have chewed love to the bone,
Now they want cigarettes, fast cars,
Boys who fuck to forget.

They want to smash them,
Pump to cigarette
Into the lime green carpet

Where they’ll stay forever trapped
In the illusion that the girls who live in ‘the dollhouse,’
Are inanimate dolls that don’t move or blink

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