on happiness and beauty

Scan 54

When you find your own happiness, you will also find your own beauty.

If for a moment you remember why you’re here, try to write it down or tell someone.

Scan 55

This girl. She is a dream I once had. She is my reflection when it is not looking back at me. She cannot sense me watching her. My mind is a one-way mirror, and in my dream, I stare all day.

One day, I’m going to be just another weird old lady.


Scan 56

The Point Is:
Eventually you
all the bullshit
and SEE
your real self.

You won’t be able to unsee the truth.

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rejecting compulsory girlhood

Scan 52

I’m gathering up all the wisdom I can find and a few shiny things that could come in handy just in case.

Mostly, I don’t want you to think you are alone.

We are taught to recognize love by the pain it brings.

Love isn’t meant to hurt.

I will grieve every man I ever loved,

she said.

Except one.

Scan 53

To be a woman means rejecting compulsory eternal girlhood.

When beauty is defined as small, wide-eyed, red-lipped, high-voiced, and passive, that is compulsory girlhood.

To be a woman — full-grown and embodied — is powerful, transgressive and subversive.

If you want to change the world …

Be willing to risk Not Being Beautiful in exchange for becoming Whole.

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rejecting beauty

These two pages kinda go together, so the transcription for both is at the bottom.

Scan 50


Scan 51








We become powerful when we realize we have always been powerful.

It’s a hot night in a strange place I call home.


kitten feet

August skin

I’ve decided to give myself over to it.

I can’t edit here.

That isn’t how it works.

Just feel your way through.

Keep breathing.

Oh my god, keep breathing.

This poem is about sadness and fear and stuff, okay?

I don’t want

to deal with


Now + then, I glance in the mirror and see my mortality. I’m reminded that I am no longer a child playing at life. I feel a sense of urgency about being Alive Right Now. I’m alive “like it’s my job” because it is.

it’s not a typo       it’s live poetry

Commentary: Good luck with this one.


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when sadness enters a room

Scan 49

When sadness enters a room, it begs me to hold it.

Much of my anxiety comes from feelings I don’t know how to deal with. When I push them away, they just come back as fear. Fear of an unnamable feeling, which I push away and push away and push away. Poetry has always been my attempt to sublimate that fear into something beautiful.

Other people’s sadness is as heavy as yours.



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Scan 48


that strange cousin
an ancient family resemblance
asking when did you get so beautiful?

This word has been lying around for a while now.


Commentary: The word “crocodile” was literally laying around on my desk. I don’t recall why I wrote it down to begin with, but after looking at it for days or weeks or however long, it turned into a short poem. I guess you could say I have a meaningful relationship with alligators (it’s a Louisiana thing), but I don’t really trust crocodiles.

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