red for the whore
you called me, pink
for the party girl,
any color at all
to call a man,
color determines
which man comes
(or if one comes at all,
perhaps). Lipstick,
once not
for feminist lips,
now shapes words
of liberation of
equality, of rising
up, of justice.

Lipstick, a mask,
a disguise, enhance-
ment, fantasy,
for you, for me.

Lipstick, or
lack of it,
may define, out-
line, ignore what
or who you
call me, high-
light who
I call myself.

Lipstick leaves
lip mark graffiti
on glass, on
cheeks, on
teacups out
of the dishwasher,
the only way
some of us
are remembered
at all.

Is it on my teeth?

Share this
Continue Reading
About the Author

Liza Wolff-Francis is a poet and writer with an MFA in Creative Writing from Goddard College who served two terms as a member of the Albuquerque Poet Laureate Program's Selection Committee and continues on the organizing committee. Her writing has most recently appeared in the magazine El Palacio: Art, History, and Culture of the Southwest, Steam Ticket, We’Moon, among others. She has a chapbook out called Language of Crossing.

Liza Wolff-Francis
More Posts by this author…