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A poem

Published on:
June 10, 2020
Read time:
3 min.
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Trigger Warning: Contains strong language and discussion of sexual assault.

Is it any wonder?

that my eyes pop open in the night
at the raven memories taking flight
and my heart’s so full of thunder?

Is it any wonder?

After changing faces, houses, towns
innocence robbed, turned upside down
that I would be left reeling?

Are you devoid of any feeling?

Sure, it’s no wonder it went to hell
when I finally found a way to sell
what had always just been taken

But can’t you see I felt forsaken?

No sir, I’m not making excuses
I must have asked for those abuses
or at least that’s what you told me

You’ve made it clear: I know my blame.
These shoulders burden all the shame
it has crippled me for decades

I made my choices. I chose my roads.
But would I have still if I had known
that I had value?

Or is it fair to wonder?

that when my sad and sodden father
could not even dare to bother
to learn my name

that something might have died inside?
That to be discarded—love denied—
shattered something deep within me?

Leaving me untethered, void of traction
yet all of that carved just a fraction
of the hole in me

The rest I dug; the shovel mine
with bloodied hands to bury time
and the memories that haunt it

Oh, I do not mean to flaunt it

I hate all I did and all I lost
I could never tally what it cost;
the shadow of that season

And still… I cannot reason

how it is you could mistake
my want to give with your right to take
I think you preyed upon me

Like a predator, you burrowed deep
and feasted on my need to keep
you fat and happy

Is it any fucking wonder?

that I would want to blunt and numb
in an effort to dull down how dumb
I feel for hoping?

That’s just my way of coping

under the battered blows of your projection
and the familiar sting of my rejection
let me ask another question:
DO YOU NOT get an erection
that I must ask for your protection?

or see my brokenness as bait
and my body as some kind of slate
on which to plant your flag and write your name
how dare you see me as yours to claim
and shame and conquer

I just can’t help but wonder…

Were you not, sir, asked to name me?
And yet you chose to defame me.
Am I not your own?
Your flesh, your bone?
Or can you not see that from your throne

from which, in arrogance, you rule close-fisted
instead of stewarding what’s been enlisted
as a treasure you must cherish

My faith in man has perished

and is it any wonder?

You claim righteousness from behind the pulpit
but I think we really know the culprit:
It’s your pride

But I’ll not hide.

I will not go home or shut my mouth
or raise your babies in a silent house
where you lord over me like master

I might be a disaster

but bad news, boy: now I know better
And I’m strong enough to refuse your fetter;
I’m free.

I slave now under a different yoke
where the burden’s light and love is spoken
over me.

I’ve been granted mercy, love and grace
but I’m afraid for you when you someday face
the reckoning

oh He is beckoning

So for his glory, I will submit
although you haven’t earned it yet
but He has.

I’ll bend the knee, I’ll bow and scrape
because I’m trusting Him you’ll not escape
his justice

You’ll answer someday, maybe soon
for the sorrow that, like summer moon,
hangs over me

But I’ll wind my way back; I’ll use that light
because in spite of you, I just might
find redemption.

C.C. Crawford
C.C. Crawford is a writer, poet, and advocate for the voiceless.

Cover Image by Milada Vigerova 

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