Growing Into My Skin

our countries are like us:
they do not believe in themselves.
they downplay their accomplishments
and look at the bad side
like i downplay my love for life.

i'm thinking of ways to twist you
-and everything-
into a villain. a bloodsucker. a fucker with the mind of a coldblooded killer.
i am too hot-headed for this.
you, amphibian. i, human.
i, hot-headed, self-destructive, scrupulous human.

when i was thirteen i hated my flesh so much
i meant to break it like one splits a twig in half

also, how do you kill a person with an ice pick
and how do you fall in love with yourself?

we are so busy being superior
and staring at others through cynical eyes
that we forget how to

i took your nudes and replaced them
with love handles
& stretch marks

then i made love to you in my mind
felt myself going over the tip
& i'm craving chocolate

in some ways we are way too selfish,
like how we run to win
collect trophies on bland bookshelves
& we push others out of the way
if we need to catch the bus

but in some ways we are far, far too selfless
like how motherhood is on par with sainthood
love does not apply to the "i"
or how when we look at ourselves in the mirror
we see not us but the one others see.

this is a declaration of love to the self.
my body is mine.
my flesh is mine.
my ridiculously tiny chest with its ticking heart is mine.
i am mine.

i belong to me.