Arm Bands

Illustration credits: Emily Nash

I keep my mind focused

On self-love

Won’t keep it racing

Maintaining that grudge

I respect every inch

Of my body and soul

I care for my wounds

Blot them with alcohol

A shot


A glass


A bottle


But I exercise


Put the good food

In my body

Yet I still find myself

Unable to sleep

My mind is too loud

Your voice on repeat

Calming me down

But sometimes keeping me up

So I take a shower

Or have a bath

I wear my tiara

To feel less scarred

A new persona

That tries so hard

Landed in hell

Slipped on the shards

Acrylic nails to claw my way out

But drowning without a guard

Or even a window in my bedroom

I’ve never been good at swimming

I’ve almost drowned more times

Than the number of laps I can do

Symbolic, perhaps

What keeps me going are the calm day chimes

I remind myself that I’m not always like this

And that arm bands are okay sometimes.

Stephanie has recently completed an English degree and is now focusing on reciting spoken word over tracks she co-produces. She enjoys writing scripts and short stories as well as discussing issues related to mental health, underrepresented voices and feminism.


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