A blank wall,
discoloured rectangles sit
in stage centre.
The girl reaches out,
her fingers brush along
where frames once sat.
Picture frames, her mother told her,
taken down now
as their glass was reflective.
Every wall in the house
exactly like this one.
No glass, no mirrors, no reflections.
Nothing to gaze upon oneself with.
Mirrors, her mother warned her,
portrayed only lies and ugliness.
Purity can only be found
when the ego is beaten and forsaken.
The girl’s hands freeze as the water from the sink runs cold.
She takes a facecloth and dabs her face,
though she will not see,
her facial features are lovely.
the bathrooms are to be avoided.
So that she may not
be taken by monsters.
Bathrooms, her mother assured her,
are not safe when outside of the house.
Beasts with tendrils
and large fangs
come to those
who enter their domain.
The girl is excellent at avoiding monsters,
she always knows them
when they come for her.
She is proud of her knowledge,
and boasts about all her mother has taught her.
But some are not as
as she is.
Mirrors, the girl’s friends argued,
show only what is before them,
and so they never lie.
The girl scoffed,
and leaned away
when they tried to give her one of their own.
Is she alright? People whispered among themselves. People show concern
when they see her walk by.
Like they can see something
but she can’t.
The girl is getting frustrated
at how outsiders think
they know what’s best for her.
She knew what it is best,
it was all her mother told her.
The girl walks silently down the hallway,
she is careful to avoid
the creak spots so as to avoid
As she walks by,
Something catches her eye,
Slowly she walks into her mother’s room
and investigates the object shining light.
A mirror sits in her hand
for the first time in years
and shock from this realization
does nothing against
the shock of revelation
when she sees a bruised and empty face
staring right back at her.