The Ballad of Daisy Dickinson

Little Daisy Dickinson was a pretty, happy, child,

Her temperament quite normal, her manner rather mild.

She loved her little dollies and she loved her Mum and Dad,

And if they didn’t love her back it made her feel quite sad.

 

They told her she was pretty and they dressed her up in lace,

They wrapped her in designer togs and painted makeup on her face.

She was special and she knew it, she could see their proud expressions,

Their smiles enhanced by whitening and years of tanning sessions.

 

Then in her teens she realised the importance of good looks,

It was only boring loners that were interested in books.

Daisy wore high heels and lipstick, and she padded out her bra,

And chose her boyfriend carefully, on the value of his car.

 

She scanned all social media for trends and new pretensions,

Had collagen, and spray tan, and nail and hair extensions.

Her makeup was a work of art, foundation, concealer and shimmer,

With expert use of shadows she could make the thick bits thinner.

 

All body hair was waxed away to keep her silky smooth,

And dental braces hammered in to straighten every tooth.

Daisy dieted and exercised, was pummelled, stretched and hoovered,

There was no portion of her body that she hadn’t had manoeuvred.

 

She took selfies in her bathroom mirror and posted them online,

Pouting like a starving duck, with a glass of chilled white wine.

Her role models, celebrities, she studied every move,

Judging their choices, critiquing their lives, deciding which ones to approve.

 

She polished, plucked and painted, every contour, every inch,

Her body was tight, no flab and no fat, there was nothing your fingers could pinch.

And yet, something was missing, a hole in her soul, a feeling of loss and despair,

Something that couldn’t be answered by simply recolouring her hair.

 

It was fame she was craving, adoration and money,

But Daisy wasn’t clever, couldn’t sing, act or be funny.

She pondered the problem and it came in a flash,

A sex tape was how she could get hold of the cash.

 

She hung out in nightclubs, and searched out her prey,

A premier-league footballer would show her the way.

The bigger the scandal, the bigger the splash,

So she hunted the married ones, out on the lash.

 

She flirted and fluttered and swivelled her hips,

She spoke like a baby and moistened her lips.

And when it was done, she uploaded the media,

And added some details to make it sound seedier.

 

She posed for the papers, and cashed in the story,

She appeared in lad’s mags as she basked in the glory.

She had fame, for a moment, it came and it went,

And the money was brilliant, until it was spent.

 

But then, back to the shadows, out of the light,

Back where survival’s a terrible fight.

Her legacy in tatters and her reputation gone,

She refused to learn her lesson, she still did not catch on.

 

For beauty fades and glory’s fleeting,

It’s a battle you can fight but it will always be defeating.

For there’s only so much slap that you can plaster on the cracks,

And in the end, each of us, has to face up to the facts.

 

It’s not what’s on the outside that should make us good or great,

It’s who we are and what we do, that’s the measure of our fate.

For Daisy, like a Christmas tree, with tinsel around it tied,

Had a bright and shiny outer, but was empty and dead, on the inside.

 

Chris Hughes 2016

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