Nostalgia for Wonky Teeth



You blame my mother as I blame my mother, 

mimicry, the supposed sign of loyalty, love. You 

who stand in the bright white glare of this 

generation, girls with their wide-open 

smiles lighting you up. Never mind,

there may be too many; 

see how they are perfectly 

aligned, the midline a lovely seam. 

Good genes. Good money. 

You use that old line from that old text, 

the one where eyes are repeatedly mentioned. 

I love your smile, you say. For the downward turn,   

restraint, rarity, like those twenty-three seconds of light 

on the wall that one evening 

when I had nothing left to say? 

But you wouldn’t really date a Brit, 

despite what you claim. Oh, for the flagrant 

cuspid, the glaring dogtooth! For the boy 

who has a penchant for the gap in the middle! 

Oh, for the exhibition of joy with no regret!


Kelly R. Samuels works as an adjunct English instructor near what some term the “west coast of Wisconsin.” Her work has most recently appeared online at apt and Cleaver.