I am Sleeping Beauty
minus the sleeping
and the beauty,
but definitely with
the high castle walls
and the climbing thickets
of wild, prickly brambles
from which it would take
a machete and a strong
and tireless arm to carve out
even the narrowest of paths,
that is if one could even
make it past the fire-breathing
dragon I have set on guard.

Even if there were
such a prince willing
to persist and endure,
likely getting scorched
and scratched for his efforts,
I rather like the cool quiet
of my stony tower
and relish the peace and
freedom of my solitude.

The fairy tales don’t mention this,
but there are perks to being
a princess without a prince.

And yet I still can’t
help wondering
every now and then
if I’m not just a little
bit asleep after all,
mistaking a phantom
half-life of dreaming
for a fully waking life.

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