The Way Beauty Glows

There is beauty

in everything

in life, in death, in whatever comes before

but beauty mostly resides

inside of a heart

where it can grow, flourish, and learn

to affect the heart it calls home

to beat life into a person

who will grow as a host

to the astounding amount of beauty running through one's veins.

Some beauty radiates through even the thickest skin,

penetrating the outside world

with so much force,

one cannot help but stop to admire

these extravagant beings

the beautiful people


And then, there are the people like me.


For the longest time, hiding their beauty

smothering it in vain attempts

to make it change, to force it to glow the same color

as the beautiful people’s,

when really,

we are doing nothing,

but pouring what little beauty we may have left

with thoughts of anger, change, and desire

to be less like us

and more like them.


We spend so much time pretending,

we forget what we love

so we can be loved by everyone.

And then our inner beauty will not shine,

not the way we want.


It sits, lonely and cold,

waiting to be aroused.

Forgotten beauty is a terrible thing.

Mine called to me for years,

trying to get me to listen.

No more, it said.

And so I asked it why it would not shine.

I asked why some people,

the beautiful people,

shine like stars in the dark, even more so in the light.

And I asked what I was doing wrong,

why would it not shine for me?

I asked many questions, but I never


when my heart replied

And I hated myself for not knowing

when the answer was




And my beauty cried to be let out

And my heart cried to listen

And my soul cried for me to Just be

and instead of listening to their cries

I cried myself to sleep at night

because each day I lost myself

a little more

in the way society cried for me to be.

I tried to be someone else for so long

I no longer existed.

I was lost in the souls

of a thousand other girls, corrupted by images

of paper thin stomachs

and ocean sized curves

and highlighted hair

and perfect makeup

and popularity beyond my wildest dreams.

I tried to pretend,

but I’ve never been able to act

and so I failed

and I drifted

the wrong


A year ago, I began to wake up,

and hear only silence

and at first it confused me.

I didn’t realize it was because

my heart had given up

and my beauty was drowning

and my soul was exhausted

and they no longer cried to be heard.


I thought I was happy

I thought anger was who I was

I drifted down the path


of rule breaking


and hatred


and dishonesty.


I stole, and I felt proud.

I lied, and I giggled inside.

I thought I had never been so alive

when really, the good in me had died.

My family was upset,

I could tell

but I just laughed, and ignored their warnings

muttering curses under my breath

I didn’t even care. They could all go to hell.


Looking back, I am ashamed. I should have listened,

things today might be different.

It wasn’t until I started to lose friends

I realized things had to change.

I had drifted away

but now

I am drifting


slowly, with help from everyone I love

I came back to life

We moved, and with the move

I left behind my old life

If I can even call it that.

I took out my guitar, my viola, and my voice

and I rediscovered the music

I had loved so much as a small child.

I found happiness in creating, instead of destroying

I wrote poems, stories, songs

I drew out my hatred on paper,

then threw it away

My center, my life can be found

laid out in graphite on the pages of a sketchbook

or in between notes

on the metallic strings of a guitar.

I wear black, not because I feel black

but to remind myself that no matter how dark something seems

there is always a sort of light, a hidden beauty.

My beauty shines through my skin,

even more than I wanted it to

so many years ago.

I shine brighter than the stars

the stars I so wanted to be

only because I decided

I didn’t want to be them after all.


Through pain,

a person can heal.


Through weakness,

I grew stronger.


Through failure,

I learned.


And I found myself

In music,

and art,

and writing.


I still learn,

I still make mistakes.

But now, I fix the mistakes I made

before they have the chance

to swallow me whole.


For the first time,

I have friends.

I am happy, energetic.

I know who I am.

I am an artist.


And I love the way I glow.

I am among

the beautiful people.

Because I finally


to listen.


This poem is about: 
My community


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