The Gifts I am Given

the mirror that I look at myself in
is old
dark
fractured
wavy
distorted
it is as if these glass fragments
have writing scrawled upon them
like so much crimson graffiti
damaged
unclean
fat
old
ugly
bitch
unworthy
invisible
unlovable
objects in this mirror
may be closer than they appear
sometimes they hurt
sometimes they bleed

people have been handing me new words
that they claim they see when they look at me
this language is not congruent
with what my looking glass
likes to venomously spew at me
these are different kinds of words entirely
strong
kind
honest
brave
badass
radiant
beautiful
authentic
powerful
impactful
wise
intelligent

I am not sure what to do
with these foreign objects
I put them in a heart-shaped box
for safekeeping
I like to take them out and wonder at them
tracing their curves with my finger

I am thinking about buying
new, clear mirrors
that surround me 360 degrees
and inscribing the glass
with these gifts of words
I have been given
that tell a different narrative of me

or perhaps I will
carve them onto flat disks
of gold, silver, and bronze
and string them into a necklace
that I wear close to my heart
it will have weight, heft
serve as an ever-present reminder
that mirrors are not always
the holders of my truths

© 2017 Revised © 2020 Christine Elizabeth Ray – All Rights Reserved

 

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