A Fractured Fairytale

by Crystal D. Mayo

He was a cautionary tale from the moment he said, “Hello”
His beguiling eyes and alabaster smile
Didn’t resemble any scoundrel or brute
She had read about in fairytales
He knew she was a novice
Beginning to chose
Just the right words for her sentences
On the climax
Of finding herself as a woman
Creating her own backstory for her memoirs

He didn’t find her pretty
But when she lingered on his every word
Forgetting her voice had a say in his conversation
She became his beautiful conquest
The freshly written cursive lines
He wanted to be the first to bind his imprint against.
He serenaded her ears
with sweet metaphors
Seductive similes
She listened intently with baited breath
At the vivid storylines
He envisioned for her
And within a season
She was infatuated
Only skimming the pages of his chapters
Not heeding warnings
To read his story
Cover to cover
From those who had already seen the context clues.

And even when doubts
Or suspicions
He edited them
With oracles of romantic hyperboles
That glistened between his alabaster teeth

And on 22nd of an August night
He stretched her naked body
Beneath his mahogany skin
Into the shapes
of what felt like love
Ironing out any creases of his foreboding truths
With sweet alliterations whispered in her ears
Until she gave herself to him so freely
She murmured poetic
soliloquies into the bedsheets and pillows

And he took every ancient
Every regal part of her
With greedy hands
Never leaving a little of herself
For herself
And it wasn’t until months later
She realized it was missing
And could never get it back

And so they began their relationship
With him writing the preface
And the first chapters
And with all her free spirit
That colored outside of the lines
Controlled with punctuations
And when resisted
She wore red ink lines on the margins of her face

Now the cautionary tale
Had evolved into
An autobiographical drama
That had reached the chapter
Of her coming of age
No longer enamoured by his style of writing
She caught the inferences in his actions
Coming home late
Smelling of indiscretions

She decoded his plagiarism
With fury, sorting them into volumes of anthologies on her shelf
Her ears were plagued with the repetitions of “sorry”
That unapologetically slide
from under his alabaster teeth

But “sorry”couldn’t hold her
When she laid in bed alone at night
But the flashbacks of how they first met did
And for the first time she read his prologue
And realized she was only a character in a narrative
told through someone else’s lenses

She took a deep breath and exhaled
Closing the final chapter of the life
He had written her in
With steady hands she grabbed
Her paper and quill
Dipped the writing tip of the nib
Inside the ink
And began to form the first words of her own epilogue
Her six months of life that stretched inside her belly
Were the inspiration
to write herself out.