Teach me to love myself

Teach me to love myself:


I run only two miles in over twenty minutes,

Shadow cast by passing street lights shows

disappointment in front of me, below me

Behind me. Bouncing blackness mocks my shame.


Teach me to love myself:


I stand in the shower, alone with my chubby thighs,

Secret scars, stretch marks and cannot help

But think, “I am only 22 and I have ruined my body,”

My hidden razor begs to continue destruction.


Teach me to love myself:


I chat with my coworkers and our students,

My mind criticizing every word. I cannot find good

In my tasks, only mistakes I solely witness.

Locked in my mind, I know they deserve better than me.


Teach me to love myself:


One day, I will hold my child whose perfections

Exponentially outnumber my flaws. She will

Look up to me not knowing I am so menial;

Teach me to love myself so that I can teach her.