{ dorian gray }

i think it a terrible curse to be a woman.

at times, when i

look in the mirror,

i imagine

i’m seeing a teary-eyed,

young girl—

robbed of her innocence,

deprived of love, and

grasping at fading beauty.

the girl always asks me:

what happened to you?

and while staring deeply into my own

tired eyes,

i’ll tell her that i paint my face

for myself,

that i wear uncomfortable clothes and shoes

for myself,

that i remove my body hair and

keep my skin soft and

smooth like a child’s

for myself,

that i’m not hungry.

and to this, she’ll ask:

why do you do it?

to be beautiful?

but i simply shake my head because

i know that youth makes her naive, and

she doesn’t understand that

the reason i behave this way is

not so obvious.

i’ll tell her that,

beauty is just a means to an end, and

the reason i do it all is

so that she can be happy.

then, i’ll tell her not to worry, that

i’ve got it all under control.

day to day, i see the same

tired eyes, that i see in my reflection, in

the faces of other women

passing on the street, and

i imagine that each of them,

while standing in front of their bathroom mirror,

stares intently into her own reflection, and tells the

eyes of her younger self that she’s happy, too—

that she’s in control, too.

i imagine, like me,

she’ll say whatever she needs to say, and

she’ll say it for years,

hoping that soon

someone will love her for

her beauty,

but, like me, she knows

somewhere in her heart that won’t happen,

that she’s not in control,

that none of her lies are true,

that beauty is the enemy of happiness, and

the enemy of love.

it is the tragedy that befalls every woman,

that by the time she realizes the truth,

it’s already too late—

her youth

is gone, her beauty

has faded,

the curse has already done its work,

and she finds herself,

standing in front of a mirror,

explaining to the eyes of her younger self

that she has everything under control.

[ photo: photo by @cecile_hoodie via @witchyfeelings_ ]

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