by Brandon Antonio Smith
A child, sitting in the passenger’s seat
While my father drove,
I’d do my best impression of
Dwayne “The Rock” Johnson’s
Peculiarly raised eyebrow
In the rearview mirror,
However silly that may sound.
I was enthralled by
What was known as
The World Wrestling Federation
At the time.
I would imagine having his face.
I found it attractive, unlike my own.
I detested smiling in school pictures.
To this day I’m still not fond
Of smiling in pictures in general.
My hate amplified when
Puberty debuted in my life.
Pimples soon bulged from
Every corner of my face,
And I’d scratch at them menacingly
Until they bled sometimes.
Blots and polka dots are the remnants.
I could see myself in a character like Shrek.
One of the first stories I wrote
Was unconsciously based on the ugly duckling motif.
It was about a dog with only three legs,
Aptly titled The Weird Dog.
The original was lost and I rewrote it
From an opaque memory in Mrs. Aldridge’s
Creative writing class when
I was a freshman in high school.
That version was lost too.
In hindsight, I realize
The weird dog always
About the author
Brandon Antonio Smith is a 23 year old homebody from Tampa, Florida struggling to embrace himself. Thus far he’s been published in The Stardust Gazette. Writing is the closest he’ll ever come towards freedom.