Secrets from Bathroom Stalls You Promised Not to Tell by Nicole Danish

I’m the poster child for waterproof mascara
Swear I’m not narcissistic, only
Look in the mirror for constant reassurance
I still exist but
We all need validation, right?

Throw rocks in the water so my image shatters
Positive this is the most realistic resemblance of me
In fragments
Distortion is my new best friend while

My real friends get nervous ‘cuz
All I ever write about is Bacardi and suicide but
Write what you know, right?

I’m not weird, only honest

Don’t lie, I’ve seen the bracelets in excess
The hollowed out look in girls’ eyes who’ve seen
Too many hip bones and
My thighs don’t gap like Jenny’s
I’ll take my coffee
No, black

Teach me that beauty means more than being
Aesthetically pleasing and I’ll believe it as much as
You’ll believe I’m fine and we can just
Pretend—even for a second that I’m not
Dying to cut myself on edges of my reflection into

Eight hundred pieces in such vein hopes I’ll
Carve myself into the cookie cutter version of what
Beautiful looks like.

We all have skeletons in our closets
I just prefer to walk around in mine.


NICOLE DANISH is a second year English major at Keene State College. She hopes her poetry can help someone else feel a little less lonely.