War Paint


Fingers brush over my skin

That is soft but resistant with moisture.

Brushes tease my grasp.

This is art with brushes that doesn’t need a canvas.

I’m not organized,

It's chaos.

Bag of makeup of every kind clinking together, plastic on plastic on glass.


What will it be today?

Old faithful, the basics.

Or maybe we’ll pick up the eye shadow that’s been begging to be used,

Asking for the gentle sweep of the brush on its soft pigment to the gentle sweep of the brush on my face.

This is beauty.

Pure contentedness in art.

Not on a canvas,

Unless you count skin.

I do.

Makeup is a skill.

I’ve done it since I was 11, not old enough for my mom to be okay with it.

I’ve mainly practiced within my limits.

Basic eye shadow,

Always in the same shape.

Coating my lashes the color of the sky at midnight.

Finger painting my face in foundation.

This isn’t math.

I can push my limit farther.

Like contouring, where things get weird,

By weird I mean awesome.

Darker and lighter makeup is the secret,

Not voodoo magic.

But if you’ve never seen someone apply their cheekbones to their face, discovering they were made with simply makeup can be a little unsettling.

Girls have been called liars,


But I know that isn’t true, some of us just like having a daily dose of art mixed with ability.

We happen to wear that art on our face.

Here's to the ladies (and some men) wearing their war paint.


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