Having abandoned a life of odd striptease, I have finally found the courage to stare square.
I have never really spoken about it.
I don’t know how men entered my life and I was transformed into shipwreck, aided by their women.
Bit by bit, stripping me down, taking pinch after pinch, and laying scratch after scratch.
Their nail marks, the blood, I see it, ever so clearly.
Blood has an odor about it, so does charred flesh.
Why did I let it happen to me?
I have been breaking down – and the pain so terrifying to feel and come to terms with – but which I have to feel, which I have no excuse to shadow and run from – and it’s here on the surface, bubbling willfully for me to see it for the very first time.
I have stopped seeking teachers and advisory, I have stopped sharing myself, I don’t talk and have no friends to distract me from feeling my pain.
Has it not always been in my body, this shame, this pain, the anger of it all, seething, and expressing itself out like spouts of water on a long and winding pipeline, raging through noisy cities, underneath the earth people walk on.
I nourish their homes, and down their shower taps, I drip down, down their bodies, taking responsibility for day dirt.
The pain formed inside, the pain that belongs only to my body.
They have given me abuse, but the pain is mine to feel.
It was made in my body, in my chest, in my gut, in my vagina.
My body knows me better than I know it, how it tightens itself out, it simply would not let anybody in, contracting, dying, hurting, as though these muscles want to wrangle all of their abuse out.
So quiet I have become, making no conversation, because there is nothing left to say – my body it does not let me, my body saves me from conversation, from small talk.
My arms and legs.
Yesterday, I woke up with the same nightmare.
The hunter had a noose around my neck.
I became a fox and he tore my head in half.
I was a torn bitch, and my soul expanded out of my body, and unfoxed itself.
He left, after having done his needful raping.
I was no more there, but then my body went into labor.
My body was there, lying alone, where the hunter had left my body behind.
There was water down my thighs, and it soon became red.
I was nulliparous and under the tree, writhing in pain akin only to women in labor.
I went through twelve hours of lonely labor and the sky was starless.
I let out a scream, but nobody responded.
And then flashes of my previous life came to the brim.
I felt insecure and vulnerable when they stared at me like they owned me.
I never stared back at them, shameful as I were.
When I would walk though the alleys of those buildings, they’d come and grab my body, and as shell-shocked I’d be, unable to understand why exactly they were doing it to me, I was convinced nevertheless, of the monstrosity they’re capable of – people who treat other people as objects, as means to an end desirable only to them.
Abuse was not what I wanted.
Nobody in their right minds, will want that.
When Silver Wish had come and visited me, he did not touch me, he just granted me a song and showed me my true worth.
I had never known love.
But I knew shame, I knew being open, I knew vulnerability.
It was not that I was sad, if you’d come to my home, you’d feel most warmth, just staring into my eyes.
I was happiness, I was love.
But their eyes? They were not respectful, they looked at me only with lust, their eyes would trace their ways down to my breasts, and although that’s the stare that I most dreaded, it was the one that I had learnt to live with, because there was simply no other way a man had looked at me.
Afterward, I would curl down in my basement, and grabbing my dress at my belly, scream in pain – the scream inaudible to anyone else, and its impact felt most profoundly inside me.
Isn’t it the strangest, most beguiling thing, that of all tears that we shed, leave no marks, they just dry away, and salt is never left behind?
How is it possible, that the sea touches the shore, and yet does not leave its salt behind?
They ask, why did she have to kill herself?
But when she tried to tell them, she was chided and shunned.
My words are coming out.
It’s all coming out, finding an escape, this anger, my anger, my righteous anger.
This sacred body is mine, I need nobody to function it – then why, why be needful of touch to make me feel some form of connection to life?
I wasn’t even brought down by my Mother.
It was some form of potluck that I came into this world.
The need to be loved has always been intense, for most human beings.
We need it, as much as we deny it.
Afterward, we cope and we learn to live in a world that is loveless, maniacal and ruthless.
As children, we direct all the blame within so as to fix what is lacking – and everything else follows.
We take responsibilities that aren’t ours to take.
And we die cruel and lonely deaths.
After the passing of twelve hours, my labour has finally pronounced itself.
I have birthed out the remnants of a past I have no involvement with anymore…
The name of my newborn is ‘abuse’ and it is not breathing.
A still-born child, with a nomenclature of vindictive fatherhood.
The ground has been dug out, and the child laid to rest.
The past is where it is.
I am no more a part of it.
Where sunflowers become gardeners, I am their most adored blossom, free and wild, unknown, and lost.
And when the pelican sings her song, spaceship broken, parts needed; I let her have my parts.