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I will not repent
for these scars
on my skin

a battle journal
of a war
I fought
hard to
win

I am marked
by life

unashamedly
growing blossom
from these
silver branches

I will not beg
for acceptance
for my being

I will simply
be
I  am covered
by the loose threads
of time

pulling at
the stitches
of memory

until all that’s
left are the frayed
edges of moments

lost

but I hold
a needle, and
can sew these
torn threads
back into the canvas

of my life, patchwork
with experiences and
memories

a whole picture, a life

complete
I was -
shackled

a body
trapped in
the bars
of a fist

but I have -
broken

the cage of
God

an angel
flying, wings
unclipped

soaring
soaring
soaring

sun marked
and faithless

he knew
he was
no match

for my free
spirited heart

that there was
no cage that
could keep
me

loveless
and bound
in fear

I am free
and guided
only by the
birdsong

that whispers me
home
I live in a world
where feathers are
signs from a
home that you
nest in
out of the corner
of your eye
-
and
smoke rings
must be caught
and cherished
-
the other place
where honeysuckle
fills the air in a
euphoric burst
of belonging
-
the place where
the edges are
soft and sounds
do not grate
-
I would live here
forever, but I
must return,
and leave Him
-
always, always
trapped between,
anchored in
two worlds
I watched the squares
on my red checked dress
every play time
as he sat next to me
on the freshly cut grass

the smell of it, eating up
my senses, consuming me

I counted the dates
on the calendar
above the teachers head
every time we were made
to sit together

how one number can roll
onto the next without
ceremony, without being
noticed

I wasn't noticed
only bty him

at nine, you don't understand
what a boys hand down your pants means

you don't understand why it makes
you feel sick,

why it makes you cry yourself to sleep
at night,

you tolerate it, so sure that
this is the way the world works

I was taught to fear men, before I understood fear,
before I understood men

the seeds that were planted in me, rotten, no fruit
would ever grow, no flowers bloom

I would remain tight, in the bud
for a long time

maybe forever

I am waiting for the right kind of rain
I have put my faith
in men of your kind
all my life

deluded into thinking
my sanctuary lay in
being cradled by your arms

only to have my heart
ripped open, as a child
might tear off the petals
of a rose

as thoughtlessly
and gleefully

as I lay scattered across the floor,
bleeding a substance that is not blood,
but the very nectar of my soul

I make a vow to never again be
so recklessly in need of love
that I ignore my gut instinct

to run

and keep running

until I find sanctuary within myself,
until I become in tune with the beat of
my own heart, content with it's gentle rhythm,
to know that this is who I am, this is my purpose,
and this is who I need to stand for,

because when I am
at peace with myself
maybe I will see through
the likes of you
My broken heart is still
teaching me to love

from the little buds of
first meetings

to the blooms
of full blown passions

when our arteries
entwine, blood
mixed and wounded

hearts beating as one
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