My childhood journals are covered with slanted math. Intersecting lines of multiplication, addition, subtraction, and long division. Math to make sense of the extra weight on my body. Math to calculate and control when I would no longer have the extra weight.

While I toned my arithmetic skills I often failed to tone much of anything else. Another teen magazine, another hope. Another cookie snuck in the night…or 10. No longer tasting good or feeling good, but comfortable just being there.

My math was frantic and hopeful. Happiness was just 45 divided by 2 divided by 4. Or 45 divided by 1.5 divided by 4.

Tell all the Truth but tell it slant

Emily Dickinson

Tell all the Truth but tell it slant—
Success in Circuit lies
Too bright for our infirm Delight
The Truth’s superb surprise
As Lightening to the Children eased
With explanation kind
The Truth must dazzle gradually
Or every man be blind—


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