I am an English professor at a two-year college where I teach writing (creative and expository) and literature. My poetry has appeared in a number of small magazines, and I have two poetry chapbooks, That’s the Way the Music Sounds, from Finishing Line Press (2009), and Talking to the Mirror, from The Last Automat Press (2010). In addition to loving poetry, I have written a mystery novel, Shadow Notes, which will be published next spring by Barking Rain Press. I live with another English professor and poet, Dr. Van Hartmann, and would rather be rich than famous. My website: www.laurelpeterson.com
That wicked queen,
she got a bad rap.
Snow White was an orphan,
abandoned like a shoe by the side of the freeway.
Who wouldn’t be frightened
of lightning and truck backfires?
So the queen took her in,
sent her to the best schools
with polished shoes and a uniform
pressed by the cleverest maid;
filled lunch bags with peanut butter and jelly,
and chocolate chip cookies.
All the good things.
Then Snow White turned fifteen,
thought she was
Wanted a boyfriend,
to stay out all night,
drink apple martinis,
listen to her music so loud
it knocked the mortar from the castle walls.
The Queen grounded her.
Snow White snuck out, told
her stepmother every day
how old and ugly she’d become,
now that she was forty.
The storytellers exaggerate
the murder thing.
Every mother has wanted to kill her child.
She’s perhaps even shared her murderous fantasies
over a glass of wine with someone
inappropriate. The Queen’s latest
consort, a hunky Brazilian tennis player,
saw his chance, took things too far.
It’s all in the trial transcript.
Snow White was placed in foster care.
Seven guys—what was that social worker thinking?
They only wanted a domestic slave
to clean up their beer cans and Doritos bags
while they toiled in the “gold mines.”
Pampered little rich girl
couldn’t take it,
tried to off herself with sleeping pills.
What a fruit.
The ER doctor who pumped her stomach
and monitored her care through the coma
fell in love.
By the time the Queen showed up
to warn him,
he was already a goner.
Snow White gave birth to a beautiful daughter.
She bestowed on her all the good things:
the best private school, with her uniform
pressed by the cleverest maid.
Lunch money for sushi and salad.
Then Snow White turned forty
and her daughter turned fifteen.
©2015 Laurel Peterson