twenty-three in poems

  • March 2, 2020, 6:57 a.m.
  • |
  • Public

Sleep is a prison cell I keep finding myself returning to
locked inside with all the bedmates of my past.
The bars slam shut
and I am faced with the hundreds of stains
covering the bed with promises of pain.

Bed is solitary confinement with my assaulters.
It is the open invitation for their fingers and my throat
to dance again while they figure out just
how many ways they can use my body for their pleasure.

But please.
Tell me about your meditation app
and your sleep supplements
and your yoga.
Tell me how the modern world keeps your head racing
with thoughts of to do lists and bills.

I will tell you about the multiple times
men have grabbed my throat or
thrust themselves into me or on me.
I will fill your head with the memories
that won’t leave mine
so that you can smell the sweat
that no amount of washing will erase from my mind.

Sleep for you is a sanctuary from here,
a moment of peace in an all too busy world.
Here is where I can prove to myself
no one is hurting me,
a haven from the nightmares
and terrors
and unending loops of the past
I can’t outrun.

And I am so very tired
but there isn’t a bed to crawl into
that isn’t designed to trap me.
There is no safety.
There is no way out.

Like any good prison,
it is meant to break me.


Last updated March 02, 2020


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