wheelhouse archive

Issue 6, Spring/Summer 2008

The Gorilla Suit Admires Itself in the Mirror
by Arlene Ang

It would like to have that brush now
if you don’t mind. I’ve just dyed it a teriyaki blue.
I could knit a maid out of this excess yarn.

A maid is someone who tidies up after houses—
not necessarily compatible with good taste.

My mother has a tongue like that.
She also thinks half of Tulsa is hers.

In many ways, I still disguise myself
to fit her expectations. I own the other half of Tulsa.

Contrary to what she tells everyone,
I wasn’t born holding a corkscrew.

The sound of nostalgia is a toupee falling—
in college, I sold vacuum cleaners door-to-door
to make up for what I drank at night.

It’s only now that I remember I’ve a husband, after all.
How did one end up such a beauty?

I keep the gorilla suit free of spiders and peel it off
my body like a seven-year itch. And the maid—
the maid turns out to be again with child.