Silent Pain

by Elizabeth McGinn on March 4, 2021


Trigger Warning: This poem includes
references to restrictive eating and body image

girl disappearing
photo courtesy of

by Grace O’Connor ’22

She was used to her bones jutting out,
Her ribs, hip bones, elbows.
She was used to her clothes never fitting her,
As they would fall off her scrawny frame.
Her face was pale and her eyes held pain.
She desperately wanted a bite of solid food,
Except, she could not swallow it.

The worry around her was tangible,
She endured this worry with silent pain.
Wanting to be able to eat a bowl of pasta,
Without the feeling of her throat closing,
Slowly, unable to open like it was super-glued shut,
Not letting air get past.

She was constantly told how skinny she was.
She would force a smile as she felt the dull knife stab her chest,
Once again.
Little did they know she envied them,
Envied their ability to eat without feeling like they can’t breathe.
But, she hated their oblivion,
Oblivion to her struggle.