This poem is about: 



Outside Your Frame


They convey a thousand words,      

.Convey a hundred meanings,

And yet,

Not one of them is me.


Look at me.

Look past the labels and the assumptions

That you see
In my pictures

And actually see me.

What do you see?


Do you see the me that used to be?

The top of the class,

The queen bee of the nerds,

Or maybe

The one with a “future?”

Do you see

What you hope to see?
Parents’ dreams?

Doctorates, and

Fleeting things that no longer are,

But should be?


Do you see the me that you’ve labeled me to be?

The young mother,

The drop-out,

Or maybe

The one without a future?

Do you see

What you expect to see?
Poverty, lost dreams?

Minimum wage, and

Binding things that currently are,

But don’t define me?


Or maybe…

You see the me that I’ve labeled me to be?

The failure,


The one who never catches her future?

Do you see

What I think you see?
Determination, slipping dreams?

Impossible goals, and

Slippery things I wish were,

But that I keep missing?


Because those aren’t me.

No filter can disguise me.

No picture can capture me.

No label can contain me,

And no poem can describe me.


I am

Beautiful and strong,

Scarred and scared.

I am

Full of passion and

Terrified of failure.

I am

A lover,

A fighter,

A mother,

A learner.

I am everything you once saw,
Everything you now see,

And everything my dreams will be.


I am not a label.
“Class nerd.”



“Teen mom.”



I am not your hopes and dreams.


“What I never had.”

“Perfect wife.”



I am simply


Not your labels.
Not your dreams.


And one day,
I’ll overcome it all,
Absorb it all,
And become greater than any image,

Picture, or poem could contain.
Because without a filter,
Outside my pictures,

I have no bounds.
I can just