It was a tiny pimple in the middle of my chin,
but it seemed most massive to me way back then.
A zit the day before the prom seemed a tragedy
insurmountable to a teenager like me.
I squeezed it and I worried it. With Clearasil I topped it.
Still I couldn’t leave it, and eventually, I popped it,
put toothpaste on and alcohol and dabbed it with foundation;
but still it wouldn’t go away, to my great consternation.
I put a band-aid on it, but that just made it worse.
And when my dad insisted that we had to rehearse
my two-step, since I’d never danced with boys before,
I backed myself right down the hall and headed out the door.
He caught me on the porch and assumed a dancing stance,
telling me he had to be sure that I could dance.
We two-stepped to the railing and two-stepped back again,
executing dancing the way he had back when.
And when he danced me through the door and back down the hall,
He said, “You’re a good dancer! You aren’t bad at all.”
Dad whispered at my door that night, just before I dozed,
“Mom had a pimple on her chin the night that I proposed.
Of all girls on the dance floor, you will be the rage.
When the prom queen’s introduced and standing on the stage,
it will be you that everyone’s looking at for sure.
They won’t be noticing your pimple. It’s your smile that is the cure.”
The prompt word was massive.