Paper Skin

a fragile monologue

I was intrigued when I first touched your skin. It was papery. Not firm and businesslike, like bond paper, or reliable and sturdy, like cardboard. You were delicate, and transparent, and just a little bit fragile, more like onion paper.

I think maybe this is quite accurate, and this is the skin you belong in. Not to say that you are thin-skinned to the point where everything breaks you. But you have cultivated a sheerness, a sensitivity, and this is the skin you live in.

I admired your struggle to free yourself from your many skins. I thought it brave the way you painstakingly peeled off layer upon layer of your onion paper skin to expose all your pungent rawness.

The untold price of this freedom was barely any more skin to hold you in. You could not contain more than your own feelings and troubles. You could not contain our problems. You could not contain our pain.

I do not want a man with paper skin. You tear easily, and cannot hold the weight of my tears. When I weep, the water from my sadness churns you into pulp. My sorrow sears your skinny paper skin, and you squirm like a salted slug on the sidewalk sizzling sunny side up.

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