Growing Pains

It hurt most behind the knee.

My mother said you need rest, 

you have grown too fast. 

It wasn’t my choice to be 

this tall this fast, to see over the top

of the kitchen table, to find

a distorted glimmer of my waist 

in the reflection of a wine bottle,

to catch balls from boys I wanted 

to look up to, to thrash below 

the blankets, fighting my frame

my bones don’t feel like my own again

It hurt most talking 

to my mother, I needed her

to rest, but I had grown too fast, 

it wasn’t my choice to be 

this tired this fast, to sit 

under the kitchen table, begging for the scraps 

of a break to catch, below the weighted blanket 

faces of boys I know I’d forgotten 

in the bottom of a bottle, I used to run 

with these legs, I used to thrash, 

fighting my frame, forgetting 

it is glass

my bones don’t feel like my own again

Walking toward my mother

without rest, home grown 

overgrown grapes sit at our kitchen table,

catching wrinkles in the sober sunlight 

of forgotten skin, we peel them fast

choosing red 

in my grandmother’s glass

in my own bones

it hurt most 


Michelle Askew, a young woman with light brown hair, sitting on a couch in front of a window with a view of Edinburgh, Scotland.

Michelle Askew is a writer originally from New York and reluctantly in Los Angeles. She graduated with a BFA in Screenwriting from the University of Southern California and is currently a staff writer on the upcoming season of Netflix’s Ginny & Georgia. She enjoys writing funny screenplays and sad poems, and usually both at once.