She-Wolf

She-Wolf

She has felt rage

the type that chars your guts

and leaves you bleeding

out your own eyeballs.

She has felt the explosion

of shrapnel

and the pain

from rogue shards

splintered between her bones and skin.

She knew of her orphaned dead,

speaking to their restless ghosts

till delirious

she lay next to them, near death,

in an effort to restore them to life

at the expense

of her own.

But that is not a rage

that climbs mountains,

it taught her only

how to cry tears of ash

in toxic blends of anger and acid

till asphyxiated.

Now

she leaves love notes

to her suffering,

marking the deaths

of all the possible happily-ever-afters

without a magical cure,

and with sharpened incisors

tipped in righteous furie,

she is released

to her once-upon-a-time.

Yu-Ju

Yu-Ju

It does not require a magic wand

you do not need three wishes

there is no genie with his lamp

or an idol to take your kisses.

There is no well to drop any pennies

nor holy water to bless us by

the grass is bare of four leaf clovers

and no shooting stars are in the sky.

But you have the greatest gift there is

it’s owned by no-one else,

tomorrow be a bit less predictable,

and instead

believe in yourself.

Timeline

Timeline

I’m primary school age

and it’s pitch black outside

a man pulls me from under my bed

and shines a torch in my eyes.

(I’ve blanked out what happens after but I still feel those wandering hands)

I’m in my teens

and boys don’t care if I come

they just force my head down

and I choke till they’re done.

(When I start learning whose pleasure I’m good for)

I’ve started self harming

the boy I’m with doesn’t care

he just takes off my jeans

ignores the fresh cuts that are there.

(When I start treating myself how they make me feel)

It’s my boyfriend’s nineteenth

we’re at the pub and he’s pissed

he’s talking porn with his mates

and bragging about the girls on his list.

(When I start paying more attention to where my hair grows)

Now I’m locked in a room

and this guy is touching my thighs

when I tell my boyfriend ‘I was assaulted at work today’

why do I feel the need to apologise?

(When I quit my job and I’m blamed for us being skint)

Not till my best friend and I are twenty four

does she tell me about her brother

I want to get a knife

and stab that manipulative motherfucker.

(When she still has to spend every Christmas with him)

Now I’m having sex and this guy

shoves himself inside me and it hurts

I yelp out with the pain

but he carries on. I’m unheard.

(When it’s never about when I’m ready)

Let me introduce you to Alex

it’s our second date

I tell him no

but I guess that’s not how you stop a rape.

It happened three times that night

then it finally stops

when I tell the police

they ask me if I came and offer to ‘tell him off’.

(When the system doesn’t believe you)

There’s more where these came from

but by now you should have the message;

when is sex about respect for women’s bodies, a loving touch or gentle caresses?

What is society teaching young women

about their own worth

when research shows we describe ‘good sex’

as ‘without physical or emotional pain’ first?

I refuse to serve jail time

for acts of war I didn’t commit

there’s a wild woman raging inside me

and she will not let you hear the end of this.

Until it is the end of it.

Fuck silence, watch me break out into song.

Life/Death/Life

Life/Death/Life

You happened upon my skeletons

and helped name them,

you see ours

and clothe them

for the funeral of all endings.

If I am Lady Death,

you are the instinct

which sings magic

over all that is tangled,

and sheds tears

to join our souls

into a force

that loves a lifetime,

till all I can hear

is the drumming of our hearts,

teaching us

that love and life

are to be lived

by the bones.

Feeding the Ghosts

Feeding the Ghosts

Dear my demons,

it’s me again

just a quick note

as since we last spoke

I’ve done some more thinking

and I’ve come to see

that the one blocking

the door to your exit

is me.

See, I’ve left it wide open

but inside my head

is a maze

that I built

in the hope

to avoid your gazes

but instead

of keeping me safe

we’re both lost in here too,

stubbornly refusing to move.

And I’ve learnt

that you won’t go

if you’re asked,

I’ve tried being polite,

I’ve tried casting spells

or blasting you with a couple of good days

till I’m screaming at you to fuck off

and it’s me that’s got the headache.

Because I’m screaming at me,

your presence is me,

you come from me,

you’re the parts of me

I’ve decided are too painful

to be part of me

because I don’t want you

in here [mind] feeding this [heart].

But whilst you’re still my enemy

we’re all starving of something

so maybe it’s time I listened

to what you’ve got to say

and do something less predictable

and ask you to stay.

I’m not saying we’ll be friends here

this just isn’t worth the fight

and I might as well

get to know you

if you’re planning on popping in

through every hard time in my life.

And you’re pretty fucking persistent at that,

and maybe that’s something important,

like how I don’t give you enough credit

for still dropping by

and coming to see me

when no matter how hard you try

to pass a message onto me

all I do is my best

to ignore you,

I mean,

that’s a pretty shit job.

Look, I don’t think

I’ll get this right first time,

I’m still trying to come to terms

with the fact that you’re mine

and it’s pretty hard to face you

when all I’ve done is wanted you gone,

but in the spirit

of trying to love

every part of myself,

whilst I grab us a slice of cake

do you mind putting the kettle on?

How They Make Us Mute

How They Make Us Mute

Trusting my own judgment

enough to learn to like

my outward appearance

is not easy when

you blame yourself

for the poor judgment

of another’s hands

and how they wouldn’t hurt you

and then tore your love

for your body

away from your body

from the outside in

and how it leaves you stuck

in a cycle of self torment

trying to forgive yourself for something

you didn’t do to yourself

but somehow allowed happen

but didn’t

till your own false sense of safety

deludes it’s better

to hate your body

for something another did to it

because look what happened

when you had the audacity

to like it.