Sometimes I really do feel like an alien in my own skin,
Like I could twist and turn, transform and try,
All the years of my life and still not get it right.
I don't know who made it that way.
Couldn't tell you where the notion developed,
Or who proved to be truth before I did.
I don't know which artist created this outline,
Sketched it in ink, and entitled it a lifestyle -
One I once dared not color outside the lines of.
But I figure, if I cannot be a Mona Lisa of a painting,
I could be a more original, less world reknown piece
Because the regard of outside perspectives is less important
Than the quality of art produced in me.
Maybe I've been too focused on the colors already on the palette,
Instead of the mountains of shades I could imagine.
Maybe the skin I wear is black, like mourning, like darkness,
But these shadows make it possible to appreciate light.
Maybe the issue isn't me. Maybe I just need a new canvas,
One that resembles my possibilities and not my limitations.
One that allows room for breath, and exploration, and mistakes -
That isn't stifled with labels, or schemes, or systems.
And maybe I have to create that for myself.
Sometimes, I really do feel like an alien in my own skin,
But that doesn't make it any less mine,
Nor any less worthy of love.
And maybe I can love this martian without having all the answers,
Or even a planet or plane to belong to.
Maybe the person behind the pen, or pencil, or paintbrush, is me,
If I decide to be.