She was not liking pink—her mother was furious. Ignoring her hating pink, her mother decorated the room in pink. Not just a dash of pink here and there—a swirling pattern of pink roses on a white blanket, a pink bud vase she might have stomached. No. Every inch of wood was lacquered the pinkest pink. Pink hangers and pink liners for pink drawers, a pink shoe case to hang from a pink closet door, pink light switches and pink doorknobs, a pink mirror and pink lightbulbs to bathe her in a pink glow. Even at night, from her window, the stars seemed pink. She was avoiding her room, outside in the green, as much as possible; her mother wondered where she was. Down the alley, furrowed in weeds, in the fields, by the river, dropping from trees, she was away; her mother was furious. She was not liking dolls, especially the expensive Madame Alexander dolls given to her on her birthdays; she was wanting to put them in the oven and set the timer, she was wanting to bury them face down in the dirt; her mother was furious. She was being sent down to the bench for unladylike behavior, and she was having her hands tied to her chair, her mouth was being taped shut; her mother was pleased. Her mother was pleased with the measures being taken by the first-grade teacher. Yes, indeed, that was the appropriate response. She was always getting into trouble; her mother sent her away to camp. She was never wanting to come home, she was running away through the woods where no one could find her; her mother was furious and found her. She was being locked in the car for the ride home and locked in her room for the rest of the long summer; her mother was pleased. She was where she belonged. She was hating ballet, she was hating Mrs. Fink and pink tutus, she was clumsy at the barre and flatfooted. She was hating piano lessons, practicing “The Typewriter” for two years without improvement. She was punching boys, hanging upside down, tearing her fancy dresses; her mother was furious. She was loving horses—the smell of them, the dirt of them, wanting always to keep the dirt with her; her mother was furious. Her mother hated stables, the smell, the dirt, the fugitive life, females in stables, and stayed away. Her father funded her; her mother was furious. She was making good grades, which no one ever noticed, was secretly playing strip poker on the weekends in the old smokehouse, was shooting a copperhead in a neighbor’s backyard with a gun she learned how to use, was being molested by a friend’s older brother. She was not telling anyone, was being shown pictures of nude women, was shooting a copperhead in the backyard, she was riding her bike down the driveway with her eyes closed. She was riding her bike down the driveway with her eyes closed and running into a tree. She was being shown pictures of nude women and she was always seeing the pictures of nude women even with her eyes closed and running into trees. She was being molested by a friend’s older brother, she was breaking her leg and carrying her bike up the hill, she was not telling anyone; her mother was furious she had broken her leg. It would require attention she didn’t want to give, explanations. When her father returned from business, he would take her to the hospital for X-rays. Things were always happening to her, she wasn’t telling anyone. She was not always making good grades, but no one cared, her leg was not healing, more and more her mother was sending her away. Things were happening to her, things were being taken away from her against her will, she was not telling anyone. She was being silent, even when things were being taken away from her that wouldn’t be hers again. She was being sent away. She was never wanting to go home again. She was having boyfriends whose names she was not remembering. She was pushing her plate away as her mother instructed, learning to live on less and less. She was getting involved. Someone told her parents. Her mother was furious. She was being raped by her friend’s older brother, she was never telling anyone. Someone told her parents, they were not believing her. She was getting kicked out of college and she was getting married and moving away. She was being silent at the dinner table and other places; her husband was furious. Her husband was naming her. She was getting locked in her room. She was being threatened and she was being choked and she was breaking away. She was taking a long walk on the beach. She wanted home to be a phone booth on a beach in Ireland where she heard the sound of waves and smelled of sea grit. But home was never being there. She was leaving, moving farther away. Her mother was furious; her husband was furious. She took jobs and had many names. She lived in different cities and spoke from phone booths she called home. The authorities didn’t know what to name her. She was gradually losing everything that had been given to her and she was glad. Her husband was having her annulled and she was glad. Her parents were having her annulled and she was glad. She was pleased with the measures being taken. Yes, indeed, that was the appropriate response. She went back to school, she paid for it. She changed her name to X. She paid for it. She did not have any more boyfriends whose names she did not remember. She said no all the time and she broke a lot of glasses, she was breaking a lot of dishes and it was feeling good. She was feeling angry. She was furious. She was telling people about it at dinner and other places. She loved feeling the anger come out of her even though many people found it unpleasant. She was not stopping. She bought more pink glasses and more pink dishes; they were replaceable. She was working and she was telling people about it even when they did not want to hear. Her mother was furious, but she didn’t care. And she didn’t care. And she didn’t care.