the dark edge of the bed
screamed muffled
in the middle of the night
a black glove creeping up
against the wall
smothered inhibitions
he got in too close
like a burglar stole
what was not his
politely calloused
pried me open with force
and soft words
innocence devoured
can you open like this
as if I had a choice
pushed till broken
no, I really can’t
when he tore out my pearl
he left a crack of coal
a vein of burnt bitter
I bled through with needs
then I calloused up
in armored elusions
calculated moves
I’ve sacrificed everything
in the name of something bigger
than this suffering
I can’t even feel this
atrocity’s collision
seen only in my ambitions’ exhibitions
my divide and conquer appetite
with hooks of sadness caught
behind my eyes
in carved tellings
across my hollow trunk
who am I but
the splintered pieces etched
by sunken voices now gone
show and tell the deepest incisions
of all the dead that never had
to compromise
with what was wrong
but I stayed behind to fight
some wounds are permanent scars
I’ll gladly take them
for the benefit of their
and those I still protect
liberate my gratitude
like the children of my deeds
my many teachers
along the way
without whom
I know I would have
died a long time ago

what started in delight
met tragedy
the chase of duality
darkened the night
the play is finding the in between
the place where fear
stares you in the face
the tiger’s gaze fixed
the oceans of sadness
I’ve crossed to find them
in the place where here
your name is engraved
in my daily rhythms
is the safest haven
Our recognition of this presence
to regard all
forms as dreams