Hardened Leather

People are good to me

But I don’t think they are

People shower me with words

That are mostly good

But I listen to the ones that aren’t

I listen to the criticisms, the insults

The bullying

Because it hurts

I like the pain it inflicts

It tears at me

It pulls off and flicks my skin away

Into a dirty bucket

Leaving me raw and fresh

Ready for infection

Which I don’t allow

My skin grows back twice as strong

Like hardened leather

Ready to be torn, again and again

And again