When the strange girl skips rope her hair flies
like a porpoise. She collects things that melt
and things that tick, circles and cubes
and checkerboards in a drawer
she can pull out from her navel.
Other children, alerted by the rumble
of marbles in her chest, chase her
across the field. She insists she is only
hungry, but they pin her down and open her
up. Cockroaches rush out and bullies run
and squeal, crushing carapaces underfoot.
She gathers as many as she can,
tells them she’s sorry there is no lock. She’s sorry,but good children shouldn’t have secrets.