The Body

This body is how I know myself.
Skin formed around muscle and bone
as I grew and moved, danced and swam.
This is the body that sang, made love,
gave birth, heard children laugh.

Throughout each day, five senses mark
the humbling rumble of thunder, corn silk
smoothness of silver flatware, enveloping
balm of a hot bath.

They say we are not our bodies, we are
more— the gossamer soul that lives on,

I say it is all in the body. It is this old body
that danced with you, bends to put on shoes,
shares pizza, plays cards, holds hands.

I no longer twist tomatoes, sticky
off the vine, enjoy the confident embrace
of well-worn boots. Slippers I wear
as I shuffle from sink to desk.

When I look in the mirror it is my mother’s
face I see—her wrinkles on my skin, her fat
above my elbows, her face sinking
into jowls and neck.

It is the body that is stabbed with grief,
frustration, pain, abuse, comforted by touch,
taste and sound. It is the body that celebrates,
remembers, yearns and dies.

It isn’t soul I crave. It’s tangible love, body love.
Hunger, for the feast of skin.

Published In

As For Life

As for Life

Delve deeper into Marilyn’s featured published work.


Discover Marilyn’s published collections.


Get to know more about Marilyn.