on loving

i have been proud of
the way i bend, open
sway, waver

i was taught by a woman
whose heart has been carved by her
loved ones, whose back has bent
and whose fingers have gnarled,
a woman with multitudes
i have not seen

i examine the curves
where i have expanded for others,
the scars showing
where i’ve been cut,

and i am glad for the
softness she has given me
but it dawns on me
that i never saw
how she loved herself