High School Production of Les Miserables

by Connie Post

Act I Scene 3   “Lovely Ladies”

I could tell the costume designer
was careful to dress the young girls 
like old fashioned street hookers
who hid their money 
where it belonged

no midriff
no fish nets
no shoes that broke their backs

each one pranced in
from stage left
each in a different shade of flawless red
sitting scantily upon the ancient props 

but as the orchestra played 
and their mouths opened
I could already tell the ones
who had been taken

those whose hips had been an altar

I could tell, those whose backs
had been pressed into the couch
with no stage crew looking on
only the fading lights

there was an ease to the 
the way they arched their necks
dropped their gaze at the last minute
knew well the scripts of subservience

when the number was over
I folded my hands
hoping the each girl would 
scamper away quietly
and discretely change her clothes

I waited for the  scenes of war to come
for someone to die on stage 
so the audience could finally grieve



Connie Post served as the first Poet Laureate of Livermore, California . Her work has appeared in Calyx, River Styx, Slipstream, Spoon River Poetry Review, Valparaiso Poetry Review and Verse Daily. Her Awards include the Liakoura Award, and the Crab Creek Review Poetry Award . Her first full length Book “Floodwater” won the Lyrebird Award.  Her second full length collection (also by Glass Lyre Press) “Prime Meridian” was released in January 2020. About this book , Juan Herrera says “we need this wisdom book, clear elixir from the source”.

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