i left my dignity on the sidewalk/deixei minha dignidade na calçada

by Rosa Stern Pait

I left my dignity on the sidewalk

it slipped out from between my fingers

and fell into the salt encrusted white cracks in the pavement

I left it with the couple arguing on the steps of a house

in an icy puddle formed where the ground dipped

like a cupped hand with chapped knuckles

where the raw heat seeps from the cracks in the doors

where anonymous cars with black eyes, like boys

runs past without looking twice

where I tried to hit the ground so hard with my feet

it couldn’t push me away again

you called me

and so I came

and left my dignity by the side of the road.

deixei minha dignidade na calçada

escorregou dos meus dedos

e caiu no sal, a casca branca das rachaduras do concreto

deixei ela com os casal discutindo na sacada

na poça gelada onde o chão quebrou

como uma mão em concha com juntas rachadas

onde o calor cru gotea pelas rachaduras das portas

onde carros anônimos com olhos pretos, como garotos

passam correndo sem olhar duas vezes

onde tentei acertar o chão tão forte com meus pés

que não poderia mais me afastar

você me chamou

então eu vim

e deixei minha dignidade na calçada.



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rosa stern pait (they/them): always finding a joke. stopped shaving years ago. convinced they would look like gwyneth paltrow if they got their act together. spent an hour screenshotting perfume genius tweets. talks like an elf trying to make a bargain. writes poems about fish? is one? pees frequently. big fan of crying later. ask them about their diva cup. just finished mad men. don't call them rosie.