mirror girl

i’m in the bad habit of being almost exact,

so close to perfection that i might as well backtrack:

i knew a girl who lined her eyes too far away from her lower lid

and now i see this becoming a trend,

the trend of being indifferent to others’ opinions.

while i can fully support this, i can’t help remembering the chiding, even from myself,

and the embarrassment of my friend who

ran to the bathroom mirror to wipe

the tears and charcoal from her eyes only to look at herself later,

a little taller now, with the knowledge that if only she had waited a while to be different

she would have saved some water, some trees,

years of believing that living without better friends entails loneliness

when she resides with herself,

someone of value and intrinsic worth

— -

mirror girl, oh how have you changed!

your face is cleared of those streaky black stains

your eyes look back at you with strength

and the striking resilience of not squeezing yourself

into the matchbox of expectations gives me

happiness as i recollect how un-daring

it would have been to never break the black pencil’s seal

and never walk through high school halls,

face painted like the warrior i wish i’d acknowledged you to be back then

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