Double Standards


We live in a world where double standards bloom around us

Waiting for the picking 

Like fresh lillies in the spring time.

If you have acne, you're ugly

If you don't, you're stuck up.


I live in a world where children pick up sailor's dictionaries

And the language spews from their lips like molten rock from a volcano

Sputtering words from their tongues too graphic for day time television

As if they've spoken these words all their lives


People walk around,

Pain in their hearts

Dying to fit in a size perfect

Trying every diet in a book, plate size shrinking

Until the plate has disappeared

Starving for that size perfect


Kids look in the mirror, 

Their faces ashamed at the reflection in the mirror

Magnifying every flaw and imperfection that lay upon their face

Laying their heads to sleep with tears leaking from their eyes

Like rain on a cloudy day

But no one hears their cries


People tell them to stick up for themselves

As if it were so easy

As if all you had to do was scream loud enough,

Fight hard enough and the bullies would vanish

Into thin air like stars when the sun comes up


But it's not easy.

It never will be.

It never was.


People say 'sticks and stones may break my bones

But words will never hurt me'


Words hurt because at the end of the day,

They replay like fresh scratches on a new cd

Replaying over and over again.

Cutting you like broken glass

Shards protruding from every flaw,

Marking you with scars that don't fade


You see,

I would rather sticks and stones thrown

East and west

North and south

Left to right

Upside down

Then to hear the nasty words 

People spit at us.


I would rather feel the pain of a thousand broken bones

Then to feel the words slice my skin

Like knives dicing at my self esteem

Cutting away at my soul


Words hurt

But they can't control you

Unless you let them

I stand in front of the mirror

Look at the words sticking out of me,

The knives poking me


I pull them out and bandage myself up

Words don't control me.

But god, they hurt.

Hurt worse than tumbles from the play ground

The good old innocent days


Disorders and Illnesses glamorized

Depression thrown around like a ball during catch

It's not funny or beautiful

It's a life someone's living

While you go around joking about it


And before you judge,

Think about what you say.

Walk around in the person's shoes

Because a simple joke to you

Isn't funny to the person suffering


Double standards surround me.

Too skinny is anorexic and ugly

Too fat is obese and disgusting



Drop the titles.

Look at someone in the eyes

And say the words threatening to escape your lips

Look into their soul and see the pain drowning them slowly 

Killing them from the inside out

Tearing at their souls

Trying to get out like a beast locked in a cage

Ain't so easy now?


It's not easy

It never will be. 

It never was.


Poetry Slam: 


Additional Resources

Get AI Feedback on your poem

Interested in feedback on your poem? Try our AI Feedback tool.


If You Need Support

If you ever need help or support, we trust for people dealing with depression. Text HOME to 741741