The worst part about an abuser

Is how they condition you

To abuse yourself

So that you have two jailers

To contend with

As you shake and rattle

The bars of your cage

All the while

Pouring the mortar

Stacking the walls

Higher around you

I was born in wet cement

The more I struggle

To pull myself out

The deeper down I sink

Sometimes I wonder

If it wouldn’t be better

To just let go

Some have thrown me ropes

Trying to help me out

But I can’t seem to hold on

I’m losing my grip

Slipping as I reach for them

I don’t know how much longer

I can keep going on like this

Before my eyes and hands

Disappear in the closing dark

The doctor asks me

How my pain is

On a scale of 1 to 10

I say it’s an 8 because last night

I didn’t let the pill bottle win

The doctor asks me

Do you feel safe at home?

I say yes because how could he know

That I’ve never known safety

Even when I am alone

Without a frame of reference

I could break their numbered charts

Instead I quietly nod my head

And return to my bed

I set my sights on

Smaller dreams now

Like quiet solitude

And a full night’s rest

To my fellow soldiers in pain

Do not set the watch for me

Do not lay a flag on my casket

When I am finally dead

I have dishonored myself

Whatever was good in me

I have rubbed it out

Bury me in the cement

That I was born into

The earth that made me

And has always painted me

In rusted browns

For my hair

And ashen gray

Beneath my eyes

They can never lie

These windows to my soul

The heartache and regret

In them is my confession

My plea for forgiveness

When I meet my end

They were given to me

By my long lost father

His madness shines in them

This is my extravagant waste

To spend time looking for answers

When they are already written

On my broken and lonely face

Staring back at me in the mirror

— B.


2 thoughts on “Blaming the Victim

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