some days i've learned to be pretty

After Reyna Biddy

By Taylor Bowman

I find a sliver of happiness in my tiniest features.

my slim, but somewhat stubby fingers.

                                                                      some days,

 I only like them with nail polish on, my ankles 

so much, I think they always look the slimmest

 in skinny jeans or in high heeled shoes. my

mother never taught me to be beautiful. 

she wasn’t the kindest and

                                                                      some days,

I can’t believe I still learned how to love with 

an open heart. 

                                                                      some days,

I’ve become her when she arose at 6am, some-

times earlier, one of the only times and spaces she

could have to herself. she told me at 12 or 13 that I 

wasn’t my true self yet. I didn’t know if she meant 

that physically or emotionally, or both, but I’m so 

stubborn I’ve been trying to prove her wrong ever 

since. maybe this was her way of saying 

                                                                      some days,

you will be okay with yourself and

                                                                      some days,

I am.

                                                                      some days,

I don’t cringe when I catch a reflection of myself 

in the mirror or forget to look in it entirely.

                                                                      some days,

I smile at myself. I like my brown skin. I think it’s 

okay to take up this amount of space. I won’t

let how I feel on other days affect how I feel on

                                                                      some days,

I choose to fall in love with me.

About the Author

Taylor Bowman is a Black poetry and fiction writer and public educator. She holds two degrees; a B.A. in Poetry and a M.A.T. in Elementary Education. Originally from Michigan, she won her first poetry competition back in her hometown at the age of thirteen and has been writing ever since. Her poetry has been published in print and in online literary journals such as The Lab Review volume 2, issue 2, the Columbia Poetry Review, no. 30, and Thank You For Swallowing, Vol. 2, issue 5.

She currently lives in Chicago, following her dreams of writing poetry and fiction and educating public school kids. She resides with her husband and two cats, Amaterasu and Artemis.