As soon as I found my voice
you told me to listen.
And I did.  The more I resisted,
the more I heard.

I thought of this last week
when the cleaning lady told me I was
beautiful.  I thought of how
all you ever saw was stringy hair and an
unsmiling mouth.  And how I saw nothing.

Just paper wings pinned to the ground.  The holes
start small, but who will stop them?
I had come to crave that ripping sound.

But today, over its roar
I think I heard my voice.  I'm claiming
the wings that, though torn,
are mine.  This is my time.

Just try now to change me.
The contents of this self
are so much larger than they appear.


             Tara Weber
            posted April, 1995