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Insidious

Date Written: November 10, 2017

I could not have been ten when dad told me

Pull your stomach in.

Younger still I saw my shape

In a ballet leotard.

At 18 I counted calories

And at 20 I rubbed raw my throat until acid boiled up.

But it was worth it when I saw

The way they looked at me in clubs

The way they treated me.

That affirmation

Made all the pain, exhaustion, tears

Worthwhile.

And even when my body slowed

And natural cycles disappeared.

It was worth it.

It was punishment and I felt righteous.

And I would not wish it on an enemy.

So when you call her a potato

When she has done nothing to hurt you

I wonder if my real shame

Is letting you think that’s ok.


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