When I was pretentious

When I was pretentious

When I was pretentious . . .

I wore a lot of black

and rarely wore make-up

and almost never wore a bra.

I shopped in thrift stores, but not for anything nice.

I had a nose ring

and unflattering short hair

and frequented independent coffee houses.

I obsessively wrote poetry - very dark, sometimes quite atrocious, poetry.

I quoted Baudelaire, Fitzgerald, Flaubert, Brautigan

oftentimes while wearing black

and my nose ring.

I punctuated my sentences with French idioms.

I listened to Van Morrison on vinyl (even though it was the 90s)

and smoked clove cigarettes

while my sometimes boyfriend smoked his pipe.

I walked in the rain without an umbrella - by choice.

I took myself entirely too seriously

when I rarely did nor said anything

which would merit that kind of seriousness.

I vowed to read Les Fleurs du Mal in its original French even though I had dropped French.

When I was pretentious,

I didn't have children

nor a house in the 'burbs

nor real responsibilities.

When I was pretentious,

I was a brat.

I'm sorry.


And, yes, I still do many of these things. Occasionally.

However, I am no longer pretentious when I do them. Motherhood has humbled me. Thank goodness!

*This could easily have been titled "When I was young" or "When I didn't have children" but "When I was pretentious" was simply too perfect.




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