it hides inside of me,

down in my torso or perhaps in my soul.

it’s a space that cannot be filled,

no matter how often it’s fed;

the neediness does not abate.

it’s an invisible gaping maw that waits to be fed,

unquenchable and always hungry.

the bottom is too far away to be relevant or reachable,

it grows and needs and spreads from the centre.

it’s a darkness that consumes everything that enters;

nothing is enough.

it craves external validation and repeated exhortations

that validate the existence but what comes to it is insufficient.

you are okay.

you’re fine.

you matter.

you’re beautiful.

important words that are but drops in the bucket,

heard before and lacking impact.

they make no dent in the desperate drive

for reassurance.

the hole remains, growing stronger regardless of what is sent its way because

it has very specific dietary needs and

the affirmations are only ever relevant, satiating

and sustaining if they come from within.

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