Her Name Was Genia

— Leslie E. Hoffman

Dolled up in red stilettos and black leather miniskirt
so tight it hikes up her cheeks, the working girl’s hips
sway in time to the hustle of The Strip.

Heads turn, men’s, some women’s.

A prospective john cruises by in a shiny new Jag;
she takes a calculated breath to catch his eye.

Sheer silk whispers against rose petal breasts
as she leans into the car…
Hey handsome, want some of this?

Sure, sweet thing,
the john hisses through a smirk
as he reaches over and opens the door.

One long leg, stockinged only with a tan
enters the car first, followed
by a tight adolescent body.

Good evenin’ hon, my name’s Venus.
What do you want me to call you?

Turning away in silence, the john
drives out of the city into the desert night.

A quarter moon—crime scene investigators
ask the age-old rhetorical question…

What could be so bad as to make these kids turn tricks?

Now, in the arms of the Goddess, her answer is clear…
Because I knew nothing of intimacy
I searched for love in the arms of strangers, but
while they used Venus, I’d whisper in their ear…

My name is Genia.

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