On Stripping / Being Stripped by Kristin Garth

Kristin Garth, Poetry

Once upon a birthday, they unbraid 

your hair.  Coworker strippers push you in 

a chair.  Undulate in a “u” on stage 

around you so the customers see when 

they unbuttoned your Oxford.  Pulled Velcro 

brusquely ripping away socks, mini 

plaid skirt.  To lose control in the peep show 

unquestionably hurts.  Like A Virgin, CD,

and this is the first and last time you will 

disrobe a facade you didn’t design.

The braids, kneesocks, skirt you never will peel

reveal consenting parts you have defined.

This night you learn in a chair, while tears drip, 

the difference in stripping and being stripped.