They say true beauty is below the surface,
so as my surface frays thin
I am undone by what leers through.
I thought I believed in kinder things, you see.
I realize now my belief was always skin deep,
superficiality stretched across a framework
of vanity, self-doubt. Such ugly things.
Every day I unravel a little more.
The tapestry that displays my self-image
falls apart strand by strand. I throw handfuls of hair
into the trash; what else could I do with it?
I have no power to put it back.
Like so many of our possessions, our bodies’ threads
become refuse when they cease to be ours.
Before this started, I would pull old tangles
from my brush and tuck them into bushes
for birds to weave into their nests,
making meaning of what was no longer mine.
Today I pull tangles of words from my head,
unspooling them to the universe like a prayer,
and try to believe that this has value, too.