how to (re)cover yourself

here’s how:


grab a hold and tear / as if through skin

rip / the frills off

get impatient and angry

cut / through layers and pull out / threads

let stitches run / up and down the skin / like finger tips

fray / the edges / then seam them back up

sew clumsily / visibly

prick / fingers and bite / through the pain

pull tighter and closer

gag / on the excess fabric

press with heat / burn / and wear to bed / then to work the next day

reassemble / with new thread 

get complimented for girlish dis/figure/ment

tear / open the fresh seam / then the flesh

re/pair until like new / well-used but not yet used up

split / like a wound underneath the patch

forget and neglect / until paint-stained and torn


when you can no longer see it

pretend it’s not there

Eileen Mary Holowka is a grad student, writer, and editor. She tweets, sings, and takes pictures of her gecko under the name @elmahka