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brown seashell - ornamental icon I am the Ugly Angel

I am the ugly angel.

You will not see me stopping here,
To watch the mall fill up with crowds.

… the endless streams

… of girls, women, mothers, men, toddlers screeching, boys, boys, grandmothers. Few fathers. Widows, loneliness.

I am the ugly angel.

Glare at the fat woman with the vacant stare.

Those sagging breasts, no bras, how cheap.
Down to the navel.
And nipples, the size of gummibears.

(Don’t think of the colour, don’t think of the colour,
don’t think …)

That bulging belly, irregular lumps
of flabby, flaccid fat –
imagine the stretchmarks meandering,
the dotted yellow pockmarks of cellulitis.

I am the ugly angel.

You will not see me.

The wide mouth stretching
to devour
(the world and -)
a hamburger.

Mustard smeared over a badly dyed moustache.

I am the ugly angel.

I may have born the gifts once.
(Gold, myrrh, frankincence.)
Beauty, youth, voice, wit, wide-eyed wonder, the works.

But really, what does an angel need beauty for?
You will not see me.

But should you see yourself,
truly see yourself,
deep down inside,
you will see beauty.

And youth, what does an angel need youth for?
You will not dance with me.

But you,
you should dance,
spin, twirl, through your life.

A voice, fit for heavenly choirs – an angel doesn’t need it.
You will not hear me.

But you,
you should –
give voice,
speak out,

Or wit, what are wit and wisdom to an angel?
You will not listen to me.

But you will want wisdom,
when daughters cry,
when fathers die,
when sisters or friends lie ill,
broken (bones, heart, courage).


You are the real miracle.

And when I stand there,
graced with
that vacant-eyed stare,
that gaping expression,
a tourist from another world –

that’s what I’ve kept,
my wide-eyed wonder,
… and the wings.

I am the ugly angel.

I love you.

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Wise Words

“He uses statistics as a drunken man uses lamp-posts - for support rather than illumination.”

—  Andrew Lang