Baring it all, etc

Naked for Cosmo

When I was in high school, I started a feminist club called F.A.T.E. The acronym makes me cringe now (“Female Advancement and Teen Empowerment” — I meant well, at least?) but anyway — one of the things we did each year was create posters for Love Your Body Day (which, if I remember correctly, was October 19th.) Still, even with the best of intentions, it took me much longer than that to really internalize the Love Your Body message. Sometimes I still struggle with it.

I’m doing better, though, and today Cosmo ran a piece I wrote called Why I Love Being Naked.

I started to look in the mirror, every single day, with deliberate and positive thoughts…These are my thighs, I thought, strong and brown, firmer in the summer months when I spend hours walking and running and dancing. These are my hips, wide like my grandmother gave me. “Childbearin’ hips,” as if that were not a choice but a given. This is the little pouch of my belly where my love of cupcakes and French fries resides; my skin is softest here. Here are my breasts, with stretch marks creeping across the tops of them like ivy; I’m told I have a lovely décolletage.

Gettin’ there.


Honeyballs or, more poetically (and Italian-ly), “struffoli”

Trying to Outrun The Holidays (Before They Even Start)

Be thin, they say, be
fit (a thing to do, not have.)
                                          (no, never)

But it’s getting dark
so much earlier.

Soon there will be candy, cookies
cake. Mashed potatoes;
baked. Turkeys; cider;
Deedee’s struffoli,
besprinkled in rainbows;

The sun is sluggish,
it doesn’t want to get up
or out of bed. Still
the alarm is set. It’s getting dark
so early now. The park
in the dark is scary. Bad things
happen to girls in the park
in the dark. But
(you must)
fit, they say. Get up
out of bed and in the dark,