I Reside Explicitly on Jackson Square – Matt Grydzuk

In the seventh grade I didn’t know I could like boys yet.

So when everyone else started dating

I spent my time idly liking this girl.

I asked her to dance once.

She was much taller than me and this altercation

dangled the notion of beauty overhead in every way like shitty dime store streamers scotch taped around the sistine chapel.

I stared into her eyes as the night fell apart and I was petrified to marble

Because there was pity in their dark recesses and in contrast

I was like

A monumental statue

Designed to fill

the negative space

in the worst possible way.

For the first time I felt ugly.

You never get called fat to your face anymore

it’s just particles of pollution

like acid rain eroding a statue.

So I am less afraid of being fat and more paranoid

because you cannot dodge glances and you cannot dodge concrete floors and statues don’t float

Thus I am not afraid of swimming, but I am afraid of the social implications of swimming pools.

What happened

To the era where “skinny” and “beautiful” were not synonyms

Where people like me were dashing and handsome and

Were depicted as

Grand marble statues that

reached up toward the sky in an air of grandeur

People have always implied

That I should take up less space but there is nothing authentic about me that

is not large and loud and in your face.

My body is no temple

It is a cathedral

Much too large for its initial purpose but it occupies the space it is given and it

extends infinitely toward the sky and

when people gaze upon it they are in awe of its beauty within and without

it occupies

the space




I am constructed from stained glass and concrete and the bottoms of empty cartons of ice cream.

I don’t know what it’s like to not be fat.

But I do know what it’s like to be beautiful.


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