32 pearly soldiers stand tall
32 white warriors guard the crimson life within.
Gnashing, crumbling, biting,
their brawn crushes all they encounter.
Immovable, impassable, they seem at first glance,
but look closer–
their weakness hides,
in plain sight,
right back at you.
Of course, I am referring to the gap between my front teeth.
When everyone else smiles, he frowns.
When everyone closes, he remains open.
But I love him for this.
In a world of straight teeth and braces, he is not welcome.
Sometimes they tell me to ‘fix’ him,
to close him up,
to bury him alive
by cramming the kings of my mouth together.
I say with a sweet smile,
flashing the ‘unsightly’ gap right into their startled faces.
Without him, my smile wouldn’t be half as charming.
I think I’ll keep him.