Maybe I'm more obsessed with today's standard of beauty than I should be, and there's some problems with this poem I couldn't seem to fix the way I wanted. But I am proud of a couple of lines in here, so I figured, might as well post it.


Beautiful is

the scrape of a razor against tiny hairs;
it sizzles with the flesh on the tanning bed.
It is the knife that hovers over the wrinkled face,
the electric shock between the eyebrows,
the hiss of the hair clamped in metal.

Beautiful is bleary eyes while the others sleep, so there is time
to scrub until the skin glows,
to dry then plaster the hair in some shape,
inspect blemishes under a magnifying glass and powder.
It is the trembling hand penciling a thick line,
the black coat on the lash, the smack of red lips.

Beautiful is the chest that juts out and the waist that juts in
and the absence of thighs,
the stab of hunger and growl of a desperate stomach.
It is flushing the vomit, counting the ribs, dreams of becoming

a single, solid line.