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Prayer of Angry Daughters -- poetry by Madison Taylor

I kicked my mother’s stomach for nine months and still came out with enough fight left to keep on screaming

My mother raised me on the belief that the world doesn't owe me a damn thing

She told me I'd wind up trapped in an office job and a loveless marriage to survive

She told me I was just like her;

From the gray eyes

to the bumped nose she always hated

I was born with the grit of concrete and ashes clotting in my blood

I was born with an artist’s hands;

Calloused and never clean,

Shaking but not too hard that I can't hold a camera

I taught myself that I deserve the world

I hardly ever cried growing up

Water stains marble after all

I hold my tongue and I chisel away the sharp corners

rinse the dust clean with blood so I don't breathe it in

And I am beautiful not because of her, but in spite of her

Without a mother's love, I find something else to color my effigy

I bake in the afternoon, tend to the flowers in the morning

Show sincerity to lavender, marigold, anise

I fall asleep on friends shoulders

And love of my own volition

And soon enough

I will have carved myself into an instrument of peace


Madison Taylor is sixteen and in a suburb thirty minutes north of Chicago. She's an artist and works on glass art and jewelrymaking/metal art. She's also a part of the local fencing club, Crimson Blades. She's been featured in DePaul's best of high school writing anthology and hopes to use writing to speak up about important issues. 

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