self love isn’t selfish

for when we entreat
with ourselves with
exquisite tenderness
and learn to love ourselves
with abiding affection

we become gentler
softer, kinder
more accepting of
our nuanced shades
more embracing of
our myriad parts

the compassion we
come to know inside
can’t help but change
who we are outside
so everything we touch
becomes gentler
softer, kinder

and then we get to become
these beautiful, walking
canvases of grace
whose love spills out
upon the thirsty ground
wherever we may go