Jan Kaneen /Putting My Face On/

Putting My Face On

Peeling myself off the sheets,
up first so you never see
blood sticky clots and gouts
of gristle, mat yellow fat,
tainted stains and viscous smears.
Feeling my way, looking for
my eyes inside the bathroom,
finger-tipping the blind wall.
They’re in a jar by the door,
my soul windows, vile jellies!
They plop flush into juicy
sockets. Wide-eyed again I
owl-stare lidless and lipless
skull-grinning, teeth pearly white
before I put my face on.
Unhooking my skin from the
door, moist and succulent,
inches thicker than you’d think,
and pinkish, bluish-greyish and red,
pulled taut over bone and bone
skull first, skin wriggling myself
unflayed and fulsome. It clings
and curves, sits just right. Its tight
and excruciating to
squirm inside my own skin but
worth it. You can’t tell I’m old, now
I’m dressed naked. It
doesn’t show and by the time
I’m fleshed, world-ready, lip-stuck,
mascaraed, concealed, sitting
smug-sipping organic tea,
I’ve forgotten how much it
cost to be pared back to flesh
and how ugly I was when
I took off my skin, and how
ugly I was when I turned
inside out, and how hollow
I am, outside in.


Jan Kaneen is a weirdo who writes weird poems, flashes and short stories whilst wrangling pugs over the Cambridgeshire Fens. She’s just been nominated for a Pushcart 2018 Award and is doing an MA in Creative Writing at the OU where she’s trying to get them to weird-up a bit. You can read some of the ‘strange’ @JanKaneen01 or https://jankaneen.com/ or she has stories forthcoming in The Bath Flash Fiction Anthology and Molotov Cocktail Prize Winners Anthology.

One thought on “Jan Kaneen /Putting My Face On/

  1. Pingback: 17/12/2016 | Jan Kaneen Creative and Other Writing

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