Toying with the idea of beauty.
You have two teeth that braces couldn’t straighten, and a smile
that is only half of what it could be.
There are patches threatening holes on the inseam of your jeans
because your thighs rub together now, friction you are in no way used to.
Weight management is your new hobby, and you have learned
eighteen substitutes for carbs, but not one
that makes you feel full of joy.
You are too much for one person, and too little
for another, a dichotomy that feeds your insecurities on your bad days
and teaches you to say “fuck it” when you’re strong.
A trail of broken hearts bleed in your footsteps, including your own.
You don’t visit with your mother. (You don’t feel sad about it.)
The world lies at your feet, the entire world, huge and glorious
and trembling. You watch your favorite movie for the 13th time instead.
There is enough disappointment within you to rival the seven seas
and you go to sleep wracking your brains: what could I have done
You are a clinking, clanking collection of collagenous confusion.
You are what I mean when I say ‘beauty.’