How can I be beautiful?

You held me tightly in a warm embrace

and told me I was beautiful.

 

You are such a liar.

 

There’s the sunset in Boracay,

a child laughing,

the bubbles in a glass of champagne,

Puccini’s Humming Chorus in Madame Butterfly,

the grand expanse of the Pacific Ocean

as seen from the shores of Calicoan in Samar,

a flame tree in full bloom,

a dancer in arabesque with her eyes gently closed,

a little lamb with his mother, grazing in the fields,

an old couple, together for the last forty years,

sharing a kiss in the garden where they met,

a double rainbow,

the scent of fresh mint leaves —

all these beautiful things;

how could I compare?

 

You are a liar.

 

A flash of lightning in the dark

making jagged trails across the night sky,

what of my temporal beauty

could match such a moment?

 

How can I be beautiful

when I am nothing but this moment,

never lasting longer than the grip of memory

and vestiges of longing

so easily lost

when the next one comes along.

 

Liar.

 

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