Poetry

A Letter to My Eating Disorder

In the Bible / a group of men conspired against

a man named Daniel / jealous of all his holy

Daniel was cast into the lion’s den / and while

no one put you there / you must remember why

you there in the first place / that is / the day you

called your mother to wish her a happy birthday

was the day you decided that you would die

of your eating disorder. Every bathroom

remembers your name.

 

Your name is Daniel / your brokenness is not

the conductor of your orchestra / and sure

maybe your thighs are too big / and maybe

your body is too much / but maybe you could

stop making / everything about this body an

apology / because darling / what has your body

done to merit this kind of abuse?

 

Dear Daniel / follow the vomit back into your

body / remember who you are / remember

where you’ve been / this is your orchestra

you can’t sing with your fingers / in your throat

remember that your name was borrowed

from a man who survived / the lion’s den

remember that that man / walked out of the

lion’s den / so walk out of the bathroom

break out of the mirror / get off the scale

stop throwing up / stop throwing up / stop

throwing up / remember how your name

became survivor / fighter / warrior

but to survive /you must eat

to fight / you must eat

to conquer / you must eat

to live / you must eat.

 

So stop fighting yourself / and fight back

Daniel / pick up your fork / and fight back

Daniel / you are all that you have / Daniel

Beautiful is something you are / not something

you eat / you can’t rely on the way you look

to sustain you / this is not enough / an eating

disorder / is not enough / it will never be enough

so remember / that ten million people in the U.S.

with an eating disorder are male / remember

that you are one / of those ten million / and

I know you stopped counting numbers years

ago / but someone has to tell those ten million

that their lives matter / their bodies matter

their bodies matter / their bodies matter

 

Dear Eating Disorder / my body matters

Dear Eating Disorder / you can’t have my body

Dear Eating Disorder / you can’t have my body

because I was here / first

 

Dear Eating Disorder

I love you.

 

Dear Body

Dear Daniel

I love you more.

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