i am worthy of love
with hair on my legs and in a
tangled mess on my head
no longer bleached from
root to tip
my clothes are softer now
and so am i
finally accepting the fullness of
my radiant little heart
i know i will love you in every
deep belly breath
a lesson learned, my tummy does
not need to be tormented for me to
merit kindness and affection
i tell the girl child inside me
that she deserves the whole world
and watch her blue eyes flash with
unfettered delight
freckles like sparkles across her face
neither of us can tolerate
the thick mask of makeup
construction of false femininity
i am eleven and crying in a
church bathroom, a rough paper towel
smearing mascara around my cheeks
wondering why we are
hiding from our truth

Originally published in Poems for Pandemic, available for purchase on Amazon.
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