You know it isn’t the pictures that hurt.
It’s remembering the sting of acceptance
washing over you like far-flung west coast
squalls: you wouldn’t be one of those girls,
with the highlights in their hair, honeyed
skin, faces lacquered with availability.
You sprayed peroxide and lemon juice over
your dark brown curls; brassy, light at last –
streaks to coat with kool-aid rainbows. Your
sudden curves a pale burden to wrap in flannel
and someone else’s discarded city lights tee –
five dollars at goodwill is all you needed to disappear.