Two Front Teeth – by Ani Keaten

Scroll down to content

Two Front Teeth


When did I learn to smile for photographs?

When did this expressionless urchin up to

her ankles in a yard flooded with hose water,

eyes on the camera man,

lurch into a broad bright-toothed girl?

As beaver teeth devoured baby teeth,

my tongue resisting its enamel encasement,

my words spilling through shifting cracks,

at what point did I turn to my mother and say,

This doesn’t feel natural, teach me how to smile?

When did she demonstrate that, for a camera,

you will perch on a chair uneasily,

tie your hair back until it pinches,

hold your breath and body still?

And when did I discover that for a picture,

even beasts gather together for the feast.

anikeatenAni Keaten is a poet grown in the desert mountains of Idaho. She writes about daily life.


Leave a Reply

Fill in your details below or click an icon to log in: Logo

You are commenting using your account. Log Out /  Change )

Google photo

You are commenting using your Google account. Log Out /  Change )

Twitter picture

You are commenting using your Twitter account. Log Out /  Change )

Facebook photo

You are commenting using your Facebook account. Log Out /  Change )

Connecting to %s

%d bloggers like this: