The Skinny

By Jasmine Farrell

My wings are tucked in,
beak shut tight
and clawed feet are curled
under the sheets.

Ferocious thoughts from loved ones, 
eat away at the colored feathers
and odd sashay
I’ve been growing to love.
Thoughts of
loved ones and strangers muttering
disturbing the tree  
I've grown bearing good fruit.
The roots are shaking at 12am as
Their voices flood my mind:
"Chile, you ain't nothin’ but skin and bones.” 
“Maybe you should eat some more potatoes”
“She’s too damn skinny.”
“You need to smile more.”
“You walk like you a runway model all the time.”
“You look so awkward.”
“She sound like a man.”

I cringe under my sheets.
Grip the covers like
a steering wheel hoping time would
drive me away from these thoughts.
But, I’m speeding past stop signs, yellow yields,
no U-turns.
Just straight open road.
Deep ruminations
Of a phoenix too much or too little
of what society says. 
Flying too high and too low.
Too straight forward, but not
outspoken enough.
Too thin and too much confidence
For my size.

Tears fall down my cheeks.
I fall asleep.

I wake up with the initial thought:
Nobody likes anybody so confident in themselves.
Might as well not give a fuck and strut.
And so…I did. 
You should too.

With the passion and drive to inspire others, Jasmine has utilized her words to uplift and inspire others from the age of 9. She had a way of painting pictures with her unique style of poetry which led her to connect her audience through her performances and written work by encouraging and reminding people that they aren’t alone. Jasmine Farrell is an author from Brooklyn, NY. She is the co-editor of, "Poems from the Heron Clan" Poetry Anthology. She has written for Ayo Magazine, FemPotential and Our Green Nation. She has published two poetry collections, including her latest, Phoenixes Groomed as Genesis Doves. IG: JustBreatheJasmine Twitter:JustBreatheJas