We were more enthusiastic than wise
when we formulated this sludge
pink as a baby’s toenails,
packaged it in skull-patterned cellophane.
Glitter flakes iridescent as pearls
float within; there’s a plush brush
with which to pancake the goo
over your least assuming features.
You’ll glow if we can help it.
You’ll shake the club down to its toes,
its sub-basements, its pleather-lined
secret compartments filled
with overpriced champagne.
Here, in this drugstore endcap,
is your chance to become
the girl no one can tear their eyes from.
Here’s a magic wand marked down beside
the sad foil-wrapped hyacinths
offered for Easter, their thick scent
flooding the fluorescent aisles
lined with nail polish, hair bands, pantyhose—
all the helpmeets of beauty, nymphs ready
to baby you into a goddess
buoyed on a seashell, gold hair floating,
the secondhand fantasy
some far-off marketer
always knew you could be.