Excerpts > Summer 2001
Diana O'Hehir
Cinderella's Godmother Intervenes Again

Cinderella's Godmother Intervenes Again

The fairy godmother was completely amazed.

Have you learned
she asked Cinderella's sister,

who answered, No indeed.
All I've got on my side is age and lack of time.

But ever since that terrible night,
it grows, chews
like a mouse
a ferret
behind a rib,
dig, scratch,
nibble, nibble . . .

this envy, resentment.

Do something
Or I'll do it,
And she grabbed that same hatchet
that once had whacked off her toes
and raised it over her chest.

Don't, said the godmother
(not unsympathetic,
she was tired of a fat pink Cinderella).

We'll try some things, not
the usual,
not empathy, compassion, love,
nor cat whisker, beetle dung,
eyeball of the envied.

How about, we go back to the beginning
and do it over.
This time, you win.

The sister was thrilled.

She bought a starlit gown, all luster
and shimmer; she bought
her coach and white horses.

She waited til the last minute
to squawk out, No.
Godmother, no.
Resentment's good for the skin
and that prince -- let's face it -- boring.

Anyway I like remembering.
It wakes me up at night,
keeps me young.

The godmother shrugged. Agreed.
But get rid
of the hatchet.

They boxed it suitably
And sent it off to be framed.

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