Outside In; Inside Out – OctPoWriMo, Oct. 29, 2012

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Outside In; Inside Out

What do you see when you look at me?

Or is it presumptuous of me to think

That you notice me at all?

I am, after all, what might be called

Past My Prime”

If you are the type to judge others

On such a trivial matter as appearance.

My voluptuous youth has settled,

Fatigued from long years of fighting gravity

Gravity, eventually, will win.

I am becoming what is sometimes called

With polite dismissal,


You might notice that my untamed hair

Tousled and twisting into rampant curls

Is woven and shot through, now

With coarser silver, honestly earned.

I do not wear makeup

And so do nothing to disguise the

age spot lakes and deepening creeks

formed of laugh lines and crow’s feet

Changing the geography of my face

Making it perhaps more interesting

But no longer my culture’s

Perception of beauty.

Ahhh, but,

If you should follow the map of my face

Up to the twin geyser pools of my eyes

Sparkling with light, life and fire

You might get a peek into my soul

And who I am within, in my hidden depths.

Those lines and crow’s feet

Which do not know wrinkle cream

Are the outward sign of a life

Spent more in laughter than in scowls.

This wild hair is a perfect fit

For an untamed, unbound spirit

Symbiotically part of the golden fall grass

The thickening curves and settling plains

Echoing the shape of the rolling hills

I am a being more attached to nature

Than to the the city skyscape

More interested by far in the

depths and breadth of the inner life

Than in how others my see this outer shell

That conceals universes and subatomic

Particles of  my being.

Me, in the backyard on October 18, 2012. Photo by Annalise S. Burton.


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  1. I felt into this poem quite a bit. Your first line threw me a bit because it is a first line on one of my poems this month. Great minds think alike. I have read through it several times. I so can relate. Although I do choose to wear make up but now not for others but for myself. I like how it looks. It makes me smile when I look in the mirror. Maybe some day I will feel differently. Peace to you friend.

    • Morgan – I used to wear it and like it, before a spent several years working for a vet, and go licked by a LOT of dogs….I started to worry about what they were ingesting. And it didn’t stay put.

      I just got out of the habit, and I am a notoriously no-fuss kind of girl. I just don’t have the patience to apply it! =D

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