Be the barcode on my bra strap so maybe
I can finally be sellable skinny. Be my #relationshipgoals,
the text to check outside my door, the 140 character tweet
about a teenage dream sucked through low-res screens.

Be the slam poet whining love songs
on the shareable Facebook post. And maybe I’m just as bad,
but at least I recognize when my eyes fall unconscious: self-
expression turned self-obsession. Maybe I should listen to Jack

talking back through my shot glass or try to absorb the black light
through my skin. Maybe I should stop bending backwards
over chivalry and shit coming back from the ‘90s, but I’m just a girl
in a “vintage” dress sized bigger than the edges cut out for her.

So don’t blame me for biting into the media sandwich that is magazines,
make-up, mannequins. Shouldn’t I just call you?
Picking up the phone is a lot more risky than the kissy-face emoji
sending out an aloof sonar of flirtation. Don’t blame me for consuming

tissue paper lies designed to target my own vulnerability, or my lack
of understanding the truth. All everyone
has ever told me is just a step in the manipulation blueprint
to get what they want, or just get me into bed. I only trust old photographs,

things I wrote down when I couldn’t sleep, my Mom, and the dirt
that makes mazes on the bottom of my boots. Be the 50% off on my receipt
so I know I got something off. Be the nicotine in my cigarette,
the Blink 182 voice inside my head, the bones that hold me up

where I stand, the two sharp vibrations on my chest,
a text, 2AM, “you up?” I’m up and I don’t tell you
that your message is one of the only things
I can actually feel.

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