Three Poems (#2) – Rachel Wiley


Glory in Two Parts

What you think you mean when you say that I Glorify Obesity
Is that I am an undeserved celebration
a gluttonous mass of unrepent
a patron saint of unhealth
that I am a pageant of sloth and wheeze and uncontrol,
a gasping heart Madonna
You think you mean how can she possibly raise her fat face  to the sun in worship
rather than submitting to the gravity of shame
That I am a sickness rolled in caramel and body glitter
A fatted golden calf in a sugar glazed crown,
That my disgraceful existence blesses other massive bodies
entices them to drink from a chalice of my toxic blood
and melts dignity into hot spit on their tongues
I am Blasphemy.
When you say that I Glorify Obesity you think you mean, how dare she.

What you actually mean when you say that I Glorify Obesity
is that indeed I am Glorious
because  who would not exalt something as miracle as a living body?
You mean to say that I carry this body every day like a sacrament
to revere the way I keep raising despite a world who does not want the truth of me
You mean to say that I am a cup runneth over
that my walk preaches a gospel of rubbing thighs
that my arm fat jiggles like a pair fleshy tambourines
that my ass sways like a well trained choir
that my fupa is an altar built around something holy
and worth bowing down to
Noe, You can be the devil I dance away
or dance your devils away with me
I cannot absolve you of your own shame filled sins against the body
and I will not carry them on my back either
I will only be a one woman tent revival
with the lights on late
sweat slick and handing out glory
When you say that I Glorify Obesity 
You actually mean to say Hallelujah
So go ahead and say Hallelujah
Say Hallelujah to the back fat
Hallelujah to the generous rolls of flesh
Hallelujah to the cellulite
Hallelujah to the stretch marks
Hallelujah to the still thumping heart
Say it with me Hallelujah
Sing it to the rafters
Glory Glory
glory glory

To The Girl in Blackface at Halloween 2011

Sometimes when I talk now it sounds like screaming. Sometimes since that night I feel 
both deafening and invisible. How did you know that I’d always wanted to be a thunder 
clap? To shake roof tiles loose and rattle windowpanes to wake some people out of a 
dead sleep, while others blame the sky and roll back into lily like slumber. 
Sometimes late at night I hear thunder and run towards it. Sometimes late at night it 
gets lonely and I know you are sleeping so sound the dead can’t even wake you.

For Fat Girls Who Considered Starvation 
                                                               When Bulimia Wasn’t Enough

Mom says that my teeth are perfect 
Perfect brother has just gotten braces on his top four front teeth
A tiny railroad bridge connecting nothing
And mom says that my teeth are perfect.
At last my quiet mouth, the overlook, the swallowed feelings have all paid off 
and cultured something perfect
and mine.
My mouth is a music box 
stuffed with pearls.

Perfect brother is tall
And lean
eats whatever he wants
One time a whole box of oatmeal cream pies.
but it is more clear each day that my baby fat is no longer baby fat
but just fat
It is more clear each day that I will not be a ballerina
I had wanted to be a ballerina.
My mouth is a music box 
A small girl spins gracefully at the back of my throat
On point
I am sure if I can just reach far enough back I could still have her grace
I reach for her every night after dinner while the bathtub fills.

Until one day the health teacher shows us a photo 
of a mouth crammed full of broken, yellowed dishes
says that a side effect of Bulimia
is ruined teeth
but Mom said that my teeth were perfect
And my perfect is a ransom I cannot bring myself to pay for the spinning girl
So I swallow her 
and then nothing more for 4 whole days
My mouth is a music box,
plays a low gear grinding that puts me to sleep.

When I do not wake up any closer to being a spinning girl encircled in pink tulle
but rather still a ravenous hollow encircled in overgrowth
I sneak down to the pantry and devour an entire box of oatmeal cream pies in the dark
before going upstairs to brush my perfect teeth 1 at a time.

About Rachel Wiley

Poet, Performer, Body Positive Activist View all posts by Rachel Wiley

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