A Polk Street Cinderella sits waiting For a cab that will never come Holding a borrowed black umbrella A suitcase And a stolen gun A picture of a boy reading "to all tomorrow's parties" Between finger and thumb A crackerjack ring, a toy car of tin And a promise of things That won't ever be done. Rags and linens, petticoats and vests Imaginary invite clutched to her chest Held together with brown paper and gum Bound with strips of old shoe leather What is done, is done. Cars drive by, sun goes down A party is not a party for some Outside the drug store she watches the rent boys Trade amphetamines and booze It ain't much of a life when you ain't Got nothing but still you lose and lose And keep on losing Bleeding hemorrhaging Dignity, pissing on the sapling tree And staring at the sun. She ain't on a losing streak She's been to eight parties this week She's hot property, a west coast fantasy Fingerless gloves on both her feet Day old pizza - someone else Picked off the meat. A dress she stole an original fake But at least she's winning something Even if she is on the take. Rags and linens, petticoats and vests Home by midnight Fairy Godmother knows best. It's all a sad drag Reality seeps in, black and white steeped in Lets her know It's time for another Bag. The Polk Street Cinderella packs up And moves down to the Civic Square A little more desperation in her beauty A little more faded, a little less there. She turns a trick, stealing a john from A boy who's always sick Clicks her broken heels, chooses A trip, not a meal And flies. She flies away to Rags and linens, petticoats and lace, The shadow of Vermeer in her face Shudders and passes through. She has another party to go to What's a girl to do? They found Cinderella 'neath the stairs To the cellar Of some Castro bar In one hand an invite, The other stained with tar No one seemed to know her name No one mourned her No one claimed her Rags and linens Petticoats and lace The street sweeper muttered Underneath his breath Crossing himself And trashing what was left He threw a blackened rose Into the back of the coroners Truck, wheezing When the street is through With you it's through.