Attitude Adjustment

Without even revising, polishing any of my poetry – never mind submitting it for publication, I found myself thinking this afternoon that my writing is simply unpublishable. Like this blog, my poetry is self-centered, way too personal and abstract, and totally lacking in theses. All of my poems these days have I’s in them. I this, me that. Who am I to say that my work is no good? Or that it is any good at all? I’ve been such a fatalist. Let me take it one step at a time. Being in a poetry workshop again would be helpful. Avarice, why haven’t you done that yet? Put that on the 43thingslist. Ugh. My list is too long.

I want to polish these poems: Siren, Do it With Tenderness, Secrets, Peaches, and even Wants/Needs – there seem to be some journals who may publish such a thing…

I skipped school and made some revisions to Not a Skinny Girl:

I am not a skinny girl
I can take up space.
I like being able to
spread out my borders
like a blanket on the beach

I am not a skinny girl
And. I. Love. My. Breasts.
The pair hang suspended,
thick, heavy and expectant.
Saturated with power,
they attract, warn, bless, curse.
But more than anything,
my breasts show appreciation.

I am not a skinny girl.
And. I. Love. My. Belly.
She is round and sweet,
leans over the balcony
of my jeans trying to
breathe fresh, fresh air.
My belly hovers, vigilant above
such tender flesh below.
She guards, gentle, alert.

I am not a skinny girl.
And. I. Love. My. Legs.
They have stamped out injustice,
the musical beat of a revolution.
They are strong under my weight
strong as I await a deeper freedom
Marching me into the future,
My legs know the truth.

[it needs a resolution. it just ends. what does it need? do i need encourage big girls to be themselves? how do i say fuck the man and his wiry definition of beauty?]

I wish I could always explain why I wrote a poem in such a way. Purposefully, I never said [in so many words] “I’m not skinny, but…” anything. “but, i don’t mind being big”, “but i’m still beautiful”, “but I have other redeeming qualities.”

Being “not skinny” and being beautiful or sexual or strong or proud or confident – they are two separate ideas. So I use -AND- to bring them together. I am not a skinny girl AND I love myself. AND I’m not afraid to take up space. AND I’m not afraid to take up space… in fact, I kinda like it. The word BUT would have given it a sense of apology. I’m sorry I’m not a skinny girl? Hell no, and Far from it.


2 thoughts on “Attitude Adjustment

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