She Says To Me...

I am a people watcher. I go to the store and look around at the all the different sizes, shapes and colors of humanity and I wonder what's their story. For instance, just because that couple looks really cute together, are they happy? are they fighting? are they married or dating and are they even a couple? I see a older gentleman and I wonder if he served our country, or how many hours he put in over the years at his job to feed his kids, or if he even has kids and if so, do they ever call? Look at that woman, she is just walking through the store and talking to herself, what a loon, no wait...she has a bluetooth earpiece...I am not talking about stereotypes and prejudices, I am referring to actually trying to figure them out. Several months ago I saw a girl, probably 20 if that. She was rail thin and pale and her clothes as well her body language said very clearly to me "leave me alone." Not in the Greta Garbo sense, all sultry and mysterious. More brooding and detached. We were waiting in line behind her and this gave me more time to notice the details. And the details made me want to cross the line put my arms around her and tell her "I understand, you don't have to do this to yourself anymore." But civility and fear held my tongue and my feet to the spot. Later I thought what others must see when they look at her. Do they think what an idiot and what would make a girl do that to herself? I'm sure there are a few who would cast aspersions on her sanity. Not me. I get it. I understand all too well. The following is a poem that I wrote after having seen her and then watching a tv program on the very same subject. I don't mind sharing that this poem is from personal experience both past and present...Everyone has a story, everyone...

she says to me
a tear brings more pain and lets more blood
than the razor she uses to make it go away
the feelings cut deeper and emotions more raw
than the lines on her arms that quiet her aches
and the cuts and scars that bring relief
help keep at bay the hounds of anger, grief
and shame that would steal self-control like a thief

she keeps it under control
she makes sure no one gets in
and nothing gets out
beyond her walls
or beneath her skin

and she says to me
she's covered up her beauty with a size 22
under lock and key she keeps it all secure
with cheeseburgers and fries to hold her close
she is hidden from eyes that look through her
eyes that might take a second glance
or maybe give her a moments chance
if he looks away and laughs, she understands

she says to me
it's a careful mask she's painted
held together with a smile
and no one can know that just beyond
she is drowning all the while
out past the edges
beyond whats allowed
to fit in to the crowd

she does whatever it takes
and she walls herself in
and she won't let you see
she keeps the ice thin
then at least she knows
how far you can go before she breaks...

she says to me
it's easier keeping all this in
keeping the closet door closed (all the junk that's hidden)
keeping the curtains pulled (don't let that be exposed)
keeping the coast guard away (it's safer this way)
keeping reality at bay
it's safer this way
Dana Moya 2007


  1. Dana,

    Thanks for posting this. I was thinking about it today and was going to ask you to send it to me again so I could show it to my friend at work. It's an amazing poem and it means a lot to me!

  2. you are such a beautiful writer.

  3. that was me by the way... becky smith :)

  4. very nicely done.

  5. Wow, Dana. I am inspired by your transparency in this post!

    I, too, sometimes look at people in the same way. Wondering about their history, family - and what hides behind the smiles! We get more alike everyday, don't we? :)

    Love you more than tater tots...and you know that's ALOT!


and remember, words are my love language...