Living

A Valentine’s Day Sonnet

 

 

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Photo: Brigitte Tohm

 

If only Valentine’s Day happened thrice,

on the darkest, coldest days of winter

when your body is still frozen from the ice,

and you need permission to reenter

the glorious life you knew you once had.

May every kiss act as a reminder

that the good will always trump the bad.

May every sweet word whispered be kinder

than the one before, so when the ice cracks,

and you heart starts beating more and more,

you will recognize its rhythm and relax.

You have heard this melody before.

The bouquet of flowers is your lover’s vow.

He’ll always love you, especially now.

 

 

Beauty

Washing The Day Off

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Photo by Alina Miroshnichenko

She wets her cotton round in micellar water and rubs it across her face. As she wipes her makeup off, she also takes her insecurities and battered self-esteem with it. She pumps a small amount of cleanser in her palm and gently rubs her hands together to create a lather. Then she rubs the gel on her face, gathering up the rest of the day’s grime: the constant anxiety of being late and messing up, the pressure to be perfect, the self-hate from not having the right body shape or clothes. She roughly rubs her face gathering all of that up and splashes her face with cold water, and watches it all go down the drain.

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Style

Pardon Her French

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The first thing to slip was her accent. She had spent weeks practicing her French, making it sound as if she was fluent. Her first slip-up was when she pronounced the “t” at the end of s’il vous plaît. She looked down at the table to avoid his reaction and took a sip of her café au lait, which burned her tongue and brought tears to her eyes. She had forgotten that she ordered her coffee très chaud because it seemed like the French thing to do. He showed no indication of catching her mistake and continued to ask her questions about growing up in France. She nibbled on her croissant and kept her answers as brief as possible.

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