a free-verse poem, “Human Prompt”

Image by Free-Photos from Pixabay

The following poem entitled “the skin i am in” was written in response to Medium’s Human Parts weekend prompt and is published here: https://medium.com/@fnfwriter/the-skin-i-am-in-93fc77d6ba7b?source=friends_link&sk=6d40596a9ef6f7ebf0846cefc782ae46

the skin i am in

watery womb
my cells gather
wrapped in the skin
i’d be born in
wrinkled, noisy
erupting into air


concrete burning
tiny feet running
june bugs darting
in the air of summer
the cool plunge
tippy-toed in water
splashing with daddy


mosquito bitten legs
scratching, blood rising in spots
stop picking, stop scratching momma said


school scares me, i think
the doors are so heavy, the kids are so loud
they don’t like my hair
i pick at that spot on my scalp
i stick my finger in the open wound
blood has a funny smell

stop picking momma said

i waited for someone else to open the doors
and slipped between before they closed

i don’t like the playground
i want to go home


the boys don’t pay much attention to a girl with unruly hair
and bad skin…i pick myself raw, then cover it up again

i can’t seem to bear this thing i am in, the calories adding up as they do

tonight i’ll add them all up


my baby is the most beautiful thing, tiny mouth to breast and i feel 
the tug of motherhood drawing me cell by cell toward purpose

i have to eat
i have to eat
i try to eat

my bones feel so thin

but this baby! oh this baby!


momma… you need this stuff for acne. i saw it on the tv.
yes baby, i think that would help my skin,

thank you, son


the skin i am in. the grandmother skin that i am in
scarred, imperfect. mine.
meals cooked. eaten. no counting.

a graveyard of skin-creams
the skin i am in
i love