Wednesday, May 8, 2013

Body Check


I owned 3 wigs in high school.
3 wigs and a pony tail extension.

Wig shops downtown were always a mystery from the sidewalk.
The interior always some variety of mustard yellow, black, silver
and heavy with mirrors.
The endless rows of styrofoam heads.
The sweet chemical smell of beauty and the stale bitter smell of endless cigarettes.
Places where aging, poverty, illness, self-love and adornment converged.

Lucky for me I was naturally flamboyant
I loved all the big divas.
show tunes and the stage.
Old wing tip shoes, paten leather heels and men’s suit coats,
deep red lipstick, liquid eyeliner, leopard print.
So when my hair began to fall out
the wigs
they came as an easy solution to hide the illness.

It’s really shitty to be 16 and have your hair fall out. 
Always on the out looking in
balding was too much.
It gave me away, screamed sick
Screamed lost cause
too much.
too loudly.

But the wigs
the outfits that went with each wig
it was all day theater.
The art of passing .
Smoke and mirrors razzle-dazzle.
Ever crafty and resourceful
I reinvented my sick ass into something audacious
The illusion of  everything is just fine 
spun by a sick and scrambling queer.


Starving not cutting

which I tried but it didn’t work for me
like the slower blade of wasting

Since I was little
I’ve swallowed trauma
It lives in my belly
A time-release poison
Designed to kill
self love
Feeds me restriction feeds me self destruct
It  is why
despite being brilliant at everything I’ve taken up
I lose it
like milk through my fingers

I carve out people like portions of food

Restrict myself right outta living

Perpetuate the drought

The not quite suicide of hunger
The intricate dance with poverty and the necessity to eat less
fits neatly into success
lives on the lean edge of bone
right up under the skin
where the ends meet only to cut themselves free

The control I need
when money is outta my hands
Milk through my
cold finger hands
Bone first hands
On ribs for security hands
tenuous will to live
put back the food
Save it for the rain
that doesn’t come.


my body
is a hook

20 years away from bulimic
but anorexic hangs
on my back
drapes around me a thread bare coat

my gut
if I could
if I’m honest
I’d empty it
like a  bowl
not for holding anything
purely decorative
and empty
I’m hard wired for that next to the bone feeling
having a handle on it all

a hook to hang my baggage on

my body
a living breathing argument

always the chatter in the background of my days
always worried if there’s food to eat
always worried if I will eat it
always worried if what I chew will actually be swallowed
if what I put in it will really digest
and if what I put in it will come out

if it will all come out

for a while after I stopped purging
I couldn’t bend over
without the contents of my stomach
automatically rushing up to my throat

with perspective
I have recovered

but still I waste

I’m hooked
hung up
hunger is handled
like a bank account
like an almost emptied
of water and


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