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I’ve considered getting a nose job

Apply metaphorical balm to sore thumb

Hooked and sloping like parabola

Graphed on grid lines etched into asymmetrical face


I realize my nose resembles that

Of Aesopian crow, straining to drink

Last of water at pitcher bottom and

Resorting to dumping glabrous pebbles instead


But will mirrors, once unforgiving,

Forgive once protruding organ protrudes

Less, pebble-smooth dorsum stands slender,

And nostrils lift like wings in flight?


While my bird beak breathes

In jet streams through altered nostrils, slit

To appease, air echoes in hollow chambers

With bone and cartilage walls now unrecognizable


Amidst bloody gauzes and puffy eyes

I question my motivation to morph 

One part of this beautiful Brown body,

Gifted to me and regifted to oblivion


Is this connected to my yearning to pluck each

Fiber off my body (trichotillomania

To beat tint into stubborn skin darkened

By ancestral labor under white fist?


I presume yes but still fall in love

With (never myself) someone who I

Yearn to see when looking into unforgiving mirrors

That forgive white men, always white men


Passersby lay prostrate and huddle together, a makeshift dais

For this marmoreal beauty, this handsome man.

I eavesdrop on conversations about his pearly whites

(Teeth and skin), his piercing blue eyes, his bare and chiseled arms


And I bite into him out of necessity, not hunger

Gnaw on the hard marble, despite my shattered teeth, despite

My bloody gums, till I make gargoyle out of statue,

Red paint dripping from where his nose once was

A member of the Brown University Class of 2023, SOJAS WAGLE is currently pursuing an Sc.B. in Psychiatric Epidemiology on the pre-med track, is a member of the nationally competitive Brown-RISD Slam Poetry Team, and has had his work published in Echo Magazine and Beyond Words Literary Magazine.

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