god forbid (Nila Narain)

god forbid

i have a body

god forbid i show
its lines, its curves,

its stretch
marks: yaw / pitch

god forbid it

grows, revels in its
own glory

god forbid it lets
its mere existence

afford it space and
time or love (oh god)

god forbid i let it

god, i am so tired

of turning this body
into poetry

why must it be this
way? why can’t

i let it be? i sit in
the belly of all the

romance i spin,
grinding my teeth as

my imagination runs
thin, thinner,

thinner, until all i am
left with is

the metaphor, the line
break, the shell i scoop

myself from to knead
and press or mold

because god forbid
i be anything less


Nila Narain (he/they) is a mad crip queer poet. They are an alum of the University of Illinois at Urbana-Champaign where they studied computer science and creative writing. In their spare time, Nila enjoys crafting and napping with their cat. Find them on Instagram @nilarain00.0.


image: Susan Gutterman