Laura Manardo is a recent graduate of Kalamazoo College and has no idea what she’s doing. She works for a medical company doing marketing data analysis and spends her weekends at themed coffee shops writing poetry about marine life.

A Prose Poem

By Laura Manardo

 

I have a memory of seducing my teddy bear.

 

I wore a button up shirt,

felt like a man,

and sat on top

of my stuffed animal.

 

Even then I knew that being a man

must be nice, must be fulfilling.

I sat right on top of the pastel bear

and felt pleasure

and I was seven.

 

When I was twelve I started humping the face of my stuffed beluga whale.

I couldn’t look it in the eyes,

but I always apologized after,

made sure I cuddled with it

more than the others.

 

A man once apologized to me during sex.

He looked down at me, seemed sincere,

and all at once I was the beluga whale

under my childhood sheets,

face up,

tail bent behind me.