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Nailpolish Remover

May 23, 2019

This is a poem I wrote several years ago; a personal reflection on my own relationships. 


<3 <3 <3 


Nail Polish Remover, 2016.  


It’s nail polish remover. 

Non-acetone, extra thick pads, 

Nail polish remover.


It was a box of eight pads, 

Each individually wrapped, 

Each drenched in chemicals, 

Built to pry the paint off my fingernails 

To dissolve the expression from myself,

To provide a blank canvas for me 

To decorate the tools with which I use 

To decorate my life. 


And I hardly ever used them. 

They sat in my drawer, 

Forgotten since Christmas 

When you used them as a stocking stuffer

Because you couldn’t think of anything else.


I never touched them. 

They were precious to me, I think. 

They were eight connections to you

And I hid them in my drawer, 

So that when I found them 

I’d remember to call you every once in a while. 


Now I hate them.

I’ve been tearing through them; one by one, 

Using them whenever I could, 

Because I don’t want them anymore.


They sit there innocently enough, 

Reminding me now of everything I don’t want to remember. 

Their significance soured, 

Their meaning now as toxic as the chemicals held within. 


They remind me now of the way you hated my brother, 

The way you tried to replace my mother, 

And the way you helped to drive my father six feet into the ground.   


And then there’s me.

I don’t know what you did to me.

Maybe it was those years of glaring,

That condescending, disdainful look you would give me, 

I think it’s for the best, honestly. 

I’ll remove the nailpolish from my fingers, 

The chemicals from the pads, 

The eight pads from the box, 

And you from my life. 

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