scrolling

i think i should’ve dated him but

one new notification from facebook

did i remember to email my professor

that reminds me

what time am i signed up for

how long has it been since i called her

i should make that playlist of friendship-themed

i hope i listened to her and she doesn’t think my silence meant i resent her for

this buzzfeed article about eating healthy will only stress me out so

why am i clicking on it

wonder what my face looks like right now

how come my skin is both oily and dry

i should drink more water

one new email

one new game request

do other people sweat this much

have i checked my grades recently

she looks so happy in this picture

why am i not like

someone tagged you in a picture

i look happy

probably because, for once

i wasn’t scrolling

(for my stretch marks)

(for my stretch marks)

 

i’ve got badass lightning strikes on my thighs

did i ever tell you?

well i do

i’ve got crooked knees and

blurred vision

ears that could use cleaning

tiny wrists and a scar on my thumb

the occasional gray hair

acne scars and a chipped tooth

all of which are beautifully me

but my favorite – easily –

are the badass

electrifying

white lines

that decorate my thighs

i wear my stripes

like a fucking warrior

An Explanation for My Irritation

imageIt is on days like these

when trees grow tall and green

and songs are whispered and laughed and sung together

When ponytails are loose and chocolate is melted

and we speak a language of inside jokes

that a reminder of reality – that I am almost adult

only furthers my transformation

into petulant child

Nice (I am not a dictionary definition)

 

Nice.

The chameleon of a word, shedding connotations like a snake sheds his skin,

the word that haunts me, defines me, good and bad in the mouths of peers,

they let it slide out like warm butter

or spit it out bitterly, watching as it smacks me in the face, gross and wet

Nice.

For the longest time, I presented my opinions in a way that made it seem like they weren’t mine,

like a waiter offering up a platter

Here you are, sir. I hope it’s to your liking.

I handed them over already cheapened, diminishing their value firsthand, a half-hearted sale of a used car that was my treasure but another man’s junk

I was never strong or firm.

I was scared.

Diplomatic. Reasonable. Polite. Timid. Self-Deprecating.

Nice.

I let that word back me into a corner, definitions chained to my hands and a permanent marker smile drawn on my face.

Listen.

I am not a dictionary definition.

I am nice but

I am not weak and

I am not boring and

I am not unimportant and I am allowed to have opinions and I am allowed to be sarcastic and I am allowed to be smart and if you are rude to me, then I am allowed to be rude back and I am allowed to kick your sorry little ass with the infinite number of comebacks I have invented and filed away for the future while I was busy being quiet and

nice.

I do not need your permission to be human.

I have every right to be infuriated and despondent and moody and thrilled and sometimes I go berserk and have dance parties in my room and

I don’t care if I’ve grown up in a society that teaches girls to deny compliments and to never celebrate their beauty or passion

for fear of being labeled conceited or full of themselves

Listen –

I AM full of myself.

Full of everything that makes me who I am.

Maybe it’s time I started wearing nice like a badge and not a noose.

I’m writing a letter to myself.

Dear Me,

I’ve decided that I love you.

Sorry I waited so long to tell you.

Hide and Seek

I am tired of this forever game of hide and seek
Come and find me already
Because if I come out from underneath the porch to find you’ve been inside,
sipping hot chocolate and
watching TV this whole time, if
I find out that you’ve forgotten to look for me, forgotten to call
my name in syllables and hug the warmth back into me,
forgotten to even unlock the front door,
I think I might cry.

In An Ideal World


I think, in an ideal world,
She will be small and lonely, round glasses on a nose
Lenses the thickness of coke bottles and
Hair as fickle as sunshine and rain
And she will creep into the store, searching
Her hands careful on the door so the bell doesn’t ring
She will breathe in the smell of canvas magic, her heavy shoulders suddenly buoyant
Her fingers will tickle the spines of her friends as if to say
Wake up – it’s time to tell your stories
She will stop to pick up the lone paperback, forgotten on the floor
Flooded with empathy for inanimate objects
Hair falling in her face, she will curl up, spines digging into her spine
Poetry prominent, reality receding
She will revel in the comfort of words that feel like her own
And maybe –
She will make a new friend

Where Do You Hide?

Where do you hide when you need to be alone

When the world seems too big and too small

When you don’t want to talk to anyone at all

Where do you hide when you can’t breathe

When your peripheral vision starts to blur

When your sinkhole depression starts to occur

Where do you hide when you need the world to just stop

When reality becomes too much for your brain

When you’re afraid your stress will make permanent stains

Where do you hide?

Because I want to know

When you’re running on empty

Where do you go?

I’m right here

Tucked in my hiding place

With the smell of books

And tears on my face

There’s room for one more

If you need to hide

It’s okay if you’re broken

Please, come inside