Black Dress

Photography by Jody Waardenburg

she pulls on her black dress over her head, teases out her hair, and inspects herself in the mirror

she’s going out. but she knows she would have more fun sitting under the covers, looking up old friends and eating enough to finally feel full

instead she’s leaving her house, hoping for something to distract her, hoping she’ll have those memories she can tell her friends about

or maybe she wants to be looked at, because being looked at feels good if you like who’s looking

she picks at her nails while waiting in line at the check out, a nervous habit
and touches her face too much, fingers to cheek, fingers to pink lips

red lacquered fingers point back to her own beauty
which she will only remember when she’s older even though it’s stayed all along

she thinks about essays while buying a bottle of wine, pulling down her dress when the cashier stares too hard
wishing she was away
wishing for the comfort of the last third the bottle brings

knowing she looks good in these heels, knowing she must look fierce and sexy
while also remembering the practicality of cab money and lines to get out of awkward situations

pretending this black dress will be the last dress
because it hides her big tummy and her thighs just right

she wakes up the next morning, her feet aching and her mouth tasting like sin
wondering if it was worth the hangover.