Tooth Fairy Sonnet

I can’t tolerate daylight, so I slip into the dim of kids’
bedrooms at night, adorned with necklaces made of
baby teeth. The color white makes me retch. I’d like
to resign, become something other than a fang
collector. I can fly, but only as a limp, boneless ghost,
a spectral jellyfish with floating skirts, a marble quarry
whirlwind. I smell of chalk dust, old dental records,
ossuaries, loss, and skeletons cleaned of meat. My
breath is a whiff of extinction. I have eyes like
mustard seeds. No, I’m not pretty. To reach your
world of porcelain drinking fountains and molar-
rotting caramels, I navigate a long, winding tunnel
each evening, parts of which are dark, and parts
of which are the hurt pink of a sore throat.

Amy Gerstler

Amy Gerstler

Amy Gerstler won the National Book Critics Circle Award in 1990. Her most recent book of poems is Scattered at Sea (Penguin, 2015). She currently teaches in the MFA Creative Writing Program at the University of California at Irvine.
Amy Gerstler

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Author: Amy Gerstler

Amy Gerstler won the National Book Critics Circle Award in 1990. Her most recent book of poems is Scattered at Sea (Penguin, 2015). She currently teaches in the MFA Creative Writing Program at the University of California at Irvine.