Woman in the Mirror

Miranda Alvarez


Mirror frameless, with exposed

sharp edges, slices at self esteem


Every feature in clear line of sight

Begs for soft, slow caress


Each one met with a tug

As if removal were that easy


Head tilts side to side

Listening to different whispers



Accept this body as is, dodge the punching

thoughts that believe and strive for perfection


Keep on staring, record everything

the reflection will tell you what to change


Suck in the belly plush from last night’s binge

Pinch the roll on your waist made of pizza


Pull the cheeks between the teeth’s clench

hollow out the excess drooping on the face


Starve the body of breath so the silhouette

won’t match the scale’s bully number


Contort, flatten, flex and maybe

the reflection can obscure the body’s atrophy


The reflection extends a hand

And I must decide what it grips


She might take over again

Sending me off to another binge


But I let the wind, she’s had me holding in

Pour an ocean of breath over her


The mirror fogs and eclipses

My view long enough to look at the time


Again, she almost makes me late

I want to be mad at her, but instead laugh


I forge one upward curve under

The nose she has convinced me to hate


Smiling, I shut off the light, dulling the mirror’s edge