Either Mrs. Laing or I don’t like criticism at all
In fact criticism shuts one of us off like a broken vending machine
No candy bar.

My father pointed to my every weakness
Like an old lady staring at teenage pimples
Mrs. Laing was an old lady

I would run over to her house for some reason
And she would give me a root beer Popsicle and talk to me
About the mildness of Camel cigarettes

I grew several inches over at her house
And shrank to a pea at five o’ clock
The door slams, floors creak

Or specific things are found wrong with my poem
Out of control wildfires are my offense, it’s too bad
I cannot become tiny again.

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