Face like a moonscape, pale, pitted, pocked, and pretty
ugly, the teenager sees with their own mind’s eye.
They see what they think others see. The petty mirror lies
on the wall, telling them tales of what they are not.
They are not perfect, the mirror shows, eyes too small,
a crooked nose, ears that stick out through the hair,
grown so long to hide what’s there. They are not
what they want to be, they are not bold or bright
or strong or sweet, they are not like their own best
friends, those others who they want to be, so easy, light
and free of worries over acne spots and greasy hair.
They daydream all the day and night, believing that
they never will be right enough for anyone to care.
Their little faults, made huge by inspection,
become so big they can’t see beyond them.
No teenager sees that these are their best years,
that they are in the blessed years,
that soon they will be at their finest,
their most glorious and shiniest,
tight and taut and fit and strong,
and, looking back, forever young.