What sorrows?

The woman’s as big as a house;

and growing.

What sorrows does she hold?

She has armoured herself against the world, from her own knowing,

encased herself in fat.

What sorrows does she hold?

What is she hiding, what happened to her?

What sorrows does she hold?

Sometimes I catch

the way she stands in gladiatorial pose.

She seats herself so carefully, I see her spreading back

and tree like thighs, the wary look within her eyes.

What sorrows does she hold?

People give her sly looks, I can see them thinking,

how can a human being grow as big as that?

What they should be asking is ..

What sorrows does she hold?

They tiptoe round her mountainousness,

her ‘dare not pity me’ expressions

What sorrows does she hold?

For every moment for her is arduous, she

looks for constant opportunities to rest, to breath,

What sorrows does she hold?

Each morning she rises to despair,

has to negotiate the furniture, the stairs,

has to endure the bold or furtive glances, the whispered words

that follow her everywhere.

Until the longed for time alone is come,

when she can taste the food she craves upon her tongue.

These are her secret times, when she can open cupboard doors,

stand in the fridges lambent light, reach out

for every food in sight,

cram sugar and salt and starchy treats into her ever craving mouth,

and eat and eat and eat and eat.

Not knowing what it is she feeds,

feeding her longing and her greed,

feeding self hatred, ridicule,

feeling the hunger in her soul, the loneliness, the melancholy,

the false mask of jolly, jolly.

Feeding a deeper sense of grief, the isolated inner child;

till food no longer tastes at all,

and all that she can do is weep.

Cocooned in a body she feeds but hates,

feels life is over, and it’s too late to liberate

the girl inside, when all she wants to do is hide.

Away from the day time’s staring eyes, seek comfort

in the arms of night; for night now

is her only friend, at last another long day’s end.

I would like the Goddesses to whisper,

‘oh you are loved, our little sister.

You have a mighty hero’s heart,

one day you’ll know that you are loved and worthy

as the beautiful, the slim, the youthful, easy tall.

You’ll see your body as a friend,

and you will feel and know and love,

the sorrows that you hold.

IDF Andrew ©

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