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Who Decided What Beauty Is?

and isn't

By Sam Eliza GreenPublished 6 months ago Updated 4 months ago 1 min read
Top Story - October 2023
photo by Tarikul Raana on Pexels

Who decided what beauty is?

In the dictionary,

it is called pleasing to the senses,

especially sight.

To me, it is when a rescued animal

curls up to you for the first time,

or the smell of rain

teasing the heat wave,

or choosing to wear my glasses today.

Who decided what beauty isn’t?

Because I have never felt uglier

than after listening

to conversations judging

the face of a human

with a sparrow’s voice or when

reading opinions admonishing

the passion

of someone whose best friend

once told them they were enough.

Who decided what is pleasing?

Because I love

being draped in baggy, frayed

jeans and remnants of yesterday.

I bathe in mud instead of

milk. I walk the path of

could instead of should.

Who decided we must

look different

than how we wake?

Even children

just learning to walk,

college students who forgot

how to sleep,

and aging bodies

just as terrified as the younger?

You could teach me all the

latest trends for covering

my flaws,

but I will always decide

they are not.

Because what I find pleasing

is the raccoon snuggling

her kits in a rotten tree trunk.

Beauty is the first time

someone tries

to be vulnerable and is answered

with kindness.

It is knowing I can wear

the red dress or sweater instead.

There is nothing more wholesome,

pleasant, gorgeous

than a body who knows

they can simply exist.

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About the Creator

Sam Eliza Green

Wayward soul, who finds belonging in the eerie and bittersweet. Poetry, short stories, and epics. Stay a while if you're struggling to feel understood. There's a place for you here.

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Excellent work. Looking forward to reading more!

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    Creative use of language & vocab

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Comments (19)

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  • The Dani Writer4 months ago

    This. Is. All!!! All the things that writing does to fuel the soul. Beauty is a nutrient. Pleasure and compassion are nutrients. The world is in the condition it is in because people have been starving, filling themselves with 'fake food' when just one glance at his poem would satisfy hunger. Thank you sooooo much for writing!

  • Lisa santos4 months ago

    What a captivating poem Beautiful words !!!

  • Happily, subscribed, great poem deserving of top story

  • Andrea Corwin 4 months ago

    Beauty Is Your Poem That you shared and I just read. ❤️

  • Doc Sherwood4 months ago

    "Beauty is the first time someone tries to be vulnerable and is answered with kindness." I was already saying wow, but when I came to those lines...! This is one of the very best poems I've ever read on Vocal. A wholly deserved shout-out by the team! Perhaps the secret (not that I'd ever presume to unpick a work so accomplished) is the balance struck, between examples drawn from your own experience and the common ground shared by your readership on the interpretation of beauty. To speak for myself, I'm transported to a time when my mother was still alive, and a place you've possibly never been. Everything I learned about beauty then is reaffirmed in what I read here. Many have commented the same below, and far more concisely, so please forgive my ramble! I just wanted to express that there is so much truth and humanity in your poem that it awed me. What you do here is precisely what is meant by people connecting through writing.

  • Sugan Ya 4 months ago

    Nice written... Incredible! I loved it... Congratulations On the Top Story🤝...

  • Andrew C McDonald4 months ago

    Like all of us as individuals, you yourself have decided, for you, what constitutes 'beauty,' 'pleasant,' or the lack thereof. We all have our individual tastes. This is a lovely written piece demonstrating that fact. Fantastic work.

  • Diani Alvarenga4 months ago

    I enjoyed your poem!

  • Congratulations 🎉 🎉♥️✌️

  • Mackenzie Davis4 months ago

    "choosing to wear my glasses today" -- wow. There is so much in this simple line. An utterly beautiful poem. I adore your poetic mind.

  • Tressa Rose4 months ago

    This was beautifully written, great job!

  • Dana Crandell4 months ago

    Excellent. Just excellent. Congratulations!

  • Margaret Brennan4 months ago

    ABSOLUTELY!!! You nailed it! I had a friend who was much more attractive that I am. However, she's also a snob and decided who she should befriend and why. I am so ready to admit that I'm 76, too many freckles, under-eye bags, and rolls of fat that will never fall off. I am me and proud of who I am. Your poem is no doubt, FANTASTIC. Thank you for allowing us to keep our own sized, personal pedestal.

  • Naveed 4 months ago

    Congratulations on achieving top story status!

  • Real Poetic4 months ago


  • Novel Allen4 months ago

    This is so lovely, really resounding with my thoughts exactly. Being a laid back person, I totally understand, my mode of dress gets laughed at, but it's ok. Thanks for validation, really a great read. Beauty is what we make it.

  • Shirley Belk4 months ago


  • Yusuf Alam6 months ago

    💯💯💯 You nailed it! 💪 Great job, seriously! 👌

  • This is a must read poem by everyone! I just loved this so much!

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