The curve of your arm
as it rests atop the black sheets
makes me feel small
forces a moment of clarity
in its simple beauty.

You have been beaten and bruised
on the inside and out
and your arm is resting there
as if it might never move again
for all the hurt it’s had –
exhausted from reaching
in search, in escape, in shame.

But you once told me
that if you have no pants to wear in life
you will never be happy
unless you learn to walk proud
down the streets with your ass out.
Someone will see the sunshine there
even if you can never find
that radiance in your own reflection.

We are all fragile
no matter how we hold ourselves
we can all break, sometimes shatter
and no matter how much we may fight
we all need to be held.
We are only ourselves.

All we can do
is sleep when exhaustion overwhelms
and reach once we are rested,
give ourselves to the arms of another
when we know the necessity of collapse,
walk proud with our asses out
because there’s brilliance in boldness,
and simply try
our very best
to be sincerely shameless.


Published by Exeter Publishing, June 2021

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