No nail to spark the fires, no waists
to nip in. There will not be cookery or
starguide, no petite or hardiness in lace,
hardly an elegance. No celebrities for
the TV. No dogeared books on floral
arrangement or patched socks, no darned
socks, no such darn thing. There will be
no more metal for the challenge.
There will be no more disaster of the street
signs. No treecrash or clunker, no perfume for
I Met You Then, of the hour, the whole hour,
needing more. There will not be timekeeping.
No luncheon on the knoll. No moors, definitely
not more than one. No Marnie. There will
be no more daughters. There will be no
more turquoise colonnade, no wallpaper worth
getting used to. No sticky toffee pudding.
Or plane ride of reward. Absolutely no thievery.
No sly cunning. There will be no wolves
and honeylapping. No desire. Not any
psychoanalytics. Nor the unstitching
or misreading of lips. There will not be
a breakfast. The oatmeal must stay cold.
No fixing of the bared and broken. No marking
the trails yellow. There will be no more
horses. There will be no more daughters. Not
a single Daisy or a path, no guidance. No bluemoon,
bluemilk, or bluish undertones. No I’d Like
to Get to Know You Better. There aren’t
any first dates here. There will be no more.
Not an Elissa. No plus or minus, no excess.
Not any malignant. No adherent or marrow
to remind anyone’s alive. Not anyone at all,
no more alive than the stick-in-the-mud.
There won’t be mud. There won’t be a need.
There will be no more daughters. Never
a driver, no reaching, no end of the line—
no peach, no sweet—no taste of You and Me,
no plum—nothing neat. No sewing tidily.
No hem holding. No one getting handsy.
There won’t be a truth or toothsome.
No, not an ounce or fling of it. Not a
pining for, never an I Would Do to You This
or That. There will never be pleat, no hat;
never long; not soft. Never Yes You Can,
Just This Once. There will not be any more
skirmish, no getting high beneath the bleachers.
No sweaters. No feeling up and not
a feeling at all. Dumb for the embrace of
nothing. No firing or fiction. Wrecked
and No I Liked You Better When. Not ever.
Christine Larusso’s work has appeared in Women’s Studies Quarterly, Narrative Magazine, The Awl, Apogee, Sycamore Review, and Pleiades—where she appeared as a featured poet. She is a graduate of New York University’s MFA program, thanks to a generous Starworks Fellowship, and was selected by Carmen Giménez Smith as the 2017 winner of the Madeleine P. Plonsker Emerging Writer’s Residency Prize. She lives in Los Angeles and is a producer for Rachel Zucker’s podcast, Commonplace.
“There Will Be No More Daughters” originally ran in TLR: Do You Love Me?