Is there a verse,
a metaphor,
a rhyme
that I can use to comprehend 
the intensity of my anguish?
Is there a school
to teach me that my body belongs to me
and that it is not a graveyard
of childhood naiveté and innocence?

I cannot dance;
for I must hold the fragments of my body firmly together
or they may fall apart
into pieces I could never gather again
for I may not recognise them;
after all, I have never learned their curves
or traced their edges
for fear of tainting my hands
with the dirt they had accumulated
under your perverse grasp
in their initial stages of growth;
Your invasion contaminated their very roots.

I cannot see.
I am afraid of looking at myself,
for perhaps I will witness
the grotesque scars and bruises you left,
those that I tried to wish away,
wash away-
scouring, until they were hidden
by the redness of my raw skin,
which I had burned countless times
in order to hide the marks
under the clean, white wax.
What is there to see in this world
without the lens of my childhood to see with?

I cannot sing.
You silenced me with your mouth
just as I had learned
to curve my lips in the syllables of my name.
I cannot feel my tongue against my teeth
without wanting to bite it to shreds
just to get rid of your old, stale taste
and the stench of your saliva
still lurks in the corners of my mouth,
mingling with my voice
until my speech is a haze of odour.
I cannot sing, I do not want to.

Is there a verse,
a metaphor,
a rhyme
that I could use to tell you
just why I sit in dimly lit corners,
afraid of being seen or heard
by the predators that lurk in broad daylight.
Is there a school
that would teach me that my body belongs to me
and it is not merely a prison
that has captured my soul.


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