Charley Peterson

Rosey Morals

She told me that she cared about things like that.
She told me that if he really loved her
that he would want to do everything that she expected.
He should want to pay for every meal,
and hold open all her doors.
He should want to walk slower for her
because she wore five-inch heels,
and he should compliment her constantly
on how wonderful they make her calves look.

He should show up each day with flowers,
but only try to kiss her with roses,
and only think of fucking her
when each of those petals has wilted—
but why would she ever have wilted flowers?

He shouldn’t miss anyone else, now that he has her.
He shouldn’t do things that she doesn’t like,
and he most certainly shouldn’t talk to other girls about them.
He most certainly shouldn’t talk to other girls.

If he talks to other girls, she’ll crush those wilted petals
with her five-inch heels
            the ones that make her calves look great
because that’s what she deserves, she says,
and so that’s always what she’ll get.

I wish every day that I had her morals,
while I watch men heat dry roses.

Charley Peterson was born in Brooklyn, NY. She is an MFA candidate at Sarah Lawrence College.

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