Flesh. Inches, feet, expanses of warm skin and a half-smoked cigarette glowing at my fingertips.

It's not such a big step.

The thrill of a new sensation, something you can do to yourself. An imprint, a stamp of posession. This is my body, here is proof.

Here, see? On my arm, my leg.

I usually pass them off as scars from mosquito bites, I have those too. They mingle and jumble and sometimes I can't remember which is which and whether it matters at all.

A cluster right inside my knee - it was dark and I couldn't see, couldn't find the spot again, so I decided to aim for the pain. Now I have these three little marks, a sprinkle of imperfect circles livid against the white.

The most suspicious looking one, (as though someone pinned me down and burned me with a cigar) is actually from the mozzies. A little lower, there is a magnified snake bite. Two in one shot. Yessireee.

I did it because I could. Because I was hurting inside and couldn't find words. Physical pain is something else to focus on. I did it because I was holding a lit cigarette and feeling nauseous and mad at myself for trying to create a new addiction.

Is there ever a reason for things like this?

The scars are mine. They will not fade. I live with them because it's a choice I made without stopping and choosing, because a burn is a burn is a burn and that's all.