Mirror, Me

This is an incredibly expressive poem. I think most women will find that his poem touches a chord in them, in the place where our mystery resides, often covered with a veneer of socialized shame.

Mirror, Me by Kathleen Landerman, from the book Pagan's Muse.

Breathing in, I am one with my shame.

Fear to look holds my whole body immobile; my weight holds me with more than gravity.

Breathing out, I am my ugliness.

Vile, wretched, contemptible thing. If the Way is Love, then I should not speak of these things to myself.

Breathing in, I am my body.

If I gaze only at the reflection of my pale belly, then I will not see myself cry.

Breathing out, I am this image.

If I light candles, and do not think of you, then I can see a goddess full of adundant harvests, round and smiling, in my thighs.

Through the smoke of incense these curves change, become secrets, invitations in velvet Braille.

If there was another woman here, we could whisper the secret, tell each other why a mirror conquered a gorgon.

Breathing in, I am no longer turned to stone with shame, regret.

Breathing out, I am-- I am.