i painstakingly paint my nails every week last 

week it was bubblegum blue. from up close


they must look so trite and clumsy. i need to stop

biting them, but blood from my fingertips


tastes sweeter than from anywhere else. 

i know this, i don’t know why. sometimes


i like to pretend i am folding in on myself i am

jealous of origami swans and the way they know


how to bend in all the right places i am jealous

of their fragility my body is all too big, too sturdy


to bend it is all points and hard edges in places

not conducive for swan-ness i don’t know how to 


unfold them. i keep dreaming of myself pulling out 

my nails one by one to sell for                something


i can never remember what i don’t think i should’ve been 

given a body shouldn’t have been trusted with this one 


bodies are made for worship and i can only hear 

God’s voice at the bottom of my own desperation     


my mother says why do you insist on ruining these 

hands that God gave you? well, these hands came 


with a lot of strings attached is it not obvious i am 

trying to sever them. i am willing to make a trade,

however, i want a small metamorphosis. after all, 

this thing that God loves most? i am willing to 

give it back that is worth at least becoming a house cat

or a raccoon. my nails are bright red and it is not enough 


to stop me from tearing into myself. my mouth is rattling 

against its cage like an animal awaiting slaughter


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