My Frog Prince

by Kristina May

I tongue my shattered tooth and taste the warm sugar salty tang. The moon is high and full. Ribbit, ribbit. Under a maple tree, your musk scrapes my throat like a scream “I never meant to hurt you.” I become seven again with a throbbing in my cheek. Shame a small pit, the size of a wolf's tooth, resting stubborn in my belly. My father turns the spigot on the maple syrup tap and says, "It's ready." I watch his hands with care to always see where they are going. “No one can see us here. It’s us and us alone,” he whispers. I lose my first tooth biting into soft fluffy syrup-stickied pancakes. Ribbit. Ribbit. The moon is high and full. My stomach turns and churns, teaches itself to tie knots to make a boy scout jealous. Ribbit, ribbit. Under a maple— you are not he yet you are no prince. I tongue my shattered tooth. The blood spurts, lingers in the reservoir of my cupped tongue (my stomach in its one-upped boy scout knots howls to taste your tongue tying my tongue) and I refuse to swallow until you come to suck it all away, a delicious knotty feeling. Ribbit, ribbit.

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