Poem: My Missing Skin

I think I left my skin somewhere.
How else to explain
This longing, yearning
To return to

the sea
the sky
the land

To crawl through the undergrowth
Belly-ground touching,
Scales tingling with

Oh, to eat


To fly, knowing that

This is all there is!

To leap, fully alive,
From the depths and
come crashing down
All thirty glorious TONS of me!

There must have been a skin lost.

Perhaps I left it up that tree,
Or in the glade where they
cornered me.
Humiliation has a way of causing

Maybe it is hiding in the corner of some playground,
Under a pile of leaves,
Trying to figure out the teasing
Rules. You, not you. Take

I slip into it sometimes: one Perfect outfit.
Look into the mirror and sigh with
recognition. Ah, yes! That’s me.

Look at me there! Tall and glorious and
exuberant and loud.

How do we live our lives like this, in
skins two sizes too small? Always afraid of
Moving too fast,
Breathing too deeply,
Stretching too high for fear of

The seams.


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