Sunkissed

The smallest cluster

Of brown black

In an uneven smudge

At the left of my knee

Down a little

This marking

Etched into my skin

Could create a cloud

Of fog across my body

And make me sick

And it makes me sick

To see you sit

In that selfish sun

To burn and blister

That perfect body

To let your flesh turn

White to pink

And then to coffee stain

Whilst I lay here

Out of sight

To protect my already

Collapsing frame

Preserve some skin left

Not yet stretched

To fill the holes

As you stretch

Your ‘perfect tan’

Across sun lounger

And in every photo

You look good

With that bronze haze

And everyone stares at you

And say ‘You’re glowing’

And I look up

To watch the backs of their heads

20.3.18

She knew we were watching

and everyone else

As she led her parade

of butter skin

and salted and bleached hair

past boys who shouldn’t be looking

and girls who couldn’t stop

because these newly bronzed baby faces

are kissed and caressed

by our eyes

and they savour

the judgement

that imprints on their damp skin

and they pretend it’s a compliment

but this compliment

will bite them tomorrow

when they look in the mirror

and see our eyes looking back