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Libba Bray

“Mary Lou wore the ring faithfully. She studied the coy girls the ones who pretended not to get the dirty joke that made Mary Lou stifle a laugh. The ones who practiced the shy downward glance who pretended giggly outrage when a boy made a suggestive remark who waited to be seen and never made the first move. The ones who called other girls sluts and judged with ease. The good girls.


Occasionally from the school bus windows she would see other wild girls on the edges of cornfields running without shoes hair unkempt. Their short skirts rode up flashing warning lights of flesh: backs of knees the curve of a calf a smooth plain of thigh. Sometimes it was just a girl waiting for a bus but in her eyes Mary Lou recognized the feral quality. That was a girl who wanted to race trains under a full moon a girl who liked the feel of silk stockings against her skin the whisper promise of a boy's neck under her lips who did not wait for life to choose her but wished to do the choosing herself. It made Mary Lou ache with everything she held back.”


Libba Bray, Beauty Queens
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Beauty Queens Beauty Queens by Libba Bray
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