Hour 18_I am trying

I am trying to tell you
but knife-edged dry ribbons
spill from my mouth.

You ask what happened.
I tell you about the humiliation,
the intimidation.

The lies told to embarrass
to destroy trust; to break apart the bonds we shared
to which he was not a part.

I remember the threats of physical violence,
isolating me from others;
feeling vulnerable and unsafe at work and where I lived.

Almost wanting the blows to fall
to shatter the anticipation of not knowing
when they would come

But he was clever
drawing the torment out to its apex
always just short of culmination

amplifying a festering heat of fear and hate.
You ask
and I am trying to tell you.

But you interrupt
and say, I thought something really awful happened.
I thought you were raped

What, this doesn’t measure up?

Am I to choke up these ribbons of pain
until they unfurl and twist at your feet,
a pretty bow?

Until they make of this something you can understand,
really awful?

These knife-edged memories
are no longer to my taste.
I’m going.

My throat is sore;
time for waiting is

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