"Dead Girls" by Kim Addonizio

DEAD GIRLS

show up often in the movies, facedown
in the weeds beside the highway.
Kids find them by the river, or in the woods,

under leaves, one pink-nailed hand thrust up.
Detectives stand over them in studio apartments
or lift their photos off pianos

in the houses they almost grew up in.
A dead girl can kick a movie into gear
better than a saloon brawl, better

than a factory explosion, just
by lying there. Anyone can play her,
any child off the street

can be hog-tied and dumped from a van
or strangled blue in a kitchen, a bathroom,
an alley, a school. That’s the beauty

of a dead girl. Even a plain one
who feels worthless
as a clod of dirt, broken

by the sorrow of gazing all day
at a fashion magazine,
can be made whole, redeemed

by what she finally can’t help being,
the center of attention, the special,
desirable, dead, dead girl.

~ Kim Addonizio
from what is this thing called love

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3 responses to “"Dead Girls" by Kim Addonizio

  1. At Squaw Valley, a woman recited Kim’s poem “Fuck” and it made me really happy. Love that book of poems. I’m looking forward to the book of prose (about poetry?) coming out next year.

  2. Ok, I do not knor the book but like the sad poem I just posted about which has to do with death and food. . . . . and which led me here.

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