The Distance Between ‘Baby’ and ‘Bitch’

The distance between ‘baby’ and ‘bitch’…
is the white space
between your eyebrows,

Meredith Brooks’s
favorite word
is fetched out of your mouth
and your wrinkled lips
dress my forehead.

As if there were no other ideas, species,
or ways to describe human females
and their emotions.
It’s not so much the idea of being an animal.
It’s the sound of my childhood cha-cha
with a ‘t’ slashing it down the middle.
It’s that you’ve misunderstood how
I’ve chosen to remain feral
when it is that emotional
instinct that made you pounce.

I am rabidly colorblind
and have inconvenienced you with such a disease,
I could call you the same.
But I am only to yelp out
in pain-pleasure
of someone else’s face materializing
on familiar terrain.

See a bitch pick up your underwear from the bathroom floor,
and surprise you with homemade cookies.
And in the moment you have figured out how to communicate
with a bitch about the importance of simplicity in décor
I will, in turn, see in black and white.

Because it’s the lack of color that’s most insulting…
that an altercation with me
requires no thought,
and I am beyond comprehension.

I’m left to beg for your emotional scraps,
waiting for ‘baby’ to save my existence.

Poem Submission by Diana C Martinez, a graduate of Montclair State University (NJ) with a BA in English with a minor in journalism and creative writing. She has been writing poetry for 10 years, usually with a focus on the complexity of mother/daughter relationships and the Latin American experience. Having been published 9 times in The Normal Review, she is a poet turned ad copywriter. Diana can be reached at:

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