This Skin

There are days
When this skin feels unfamiliar
Laboured breaths
Clenching sides
An uncomfortable spotlight Of judging eyes

On those days
I hug myself closer
Look towards my feet
Take solace in the even ground
Pray,
Pray steps aren’t miscalculated
That steps aren’t forgotten

I shrink
Into an oblivion of thoughts,
Thoughts I wish my subconscious
Would repel-
These dark nights of unforgiving thoughts
Are the worse.

You should know
How I know
That even among friends
My fingers fumble
And words that come out
Are always,
Always
Calculated

These clothes on my back
Help in the hiding
The nipping and tucking
And yet
I still feel foreign-
Those scrutinising eyes
Tear them apart
Till all that remains
Is rag and bone

I’ll suck in my stomach
Nibble on my food
Afraid that they’ll associate
Size with portion-
This stomach of mine
Has been trained,
Trained to restrain

So,
Pen me a fat girl’s guide
To surviving in this world-
The alien in me yearns.

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