Three foot two, a baby girl clutching the door frame

Head peaking over with angel blond curls, blue eyes full of fear

Guess what now, it's true, no escape, Daddy's home dear. > > > >

Tiptoeing across the floor, holding the bottle

Pouring out what's left, middle of the night

Little boy stopping to tuck mommy in tight > > > >

Waking up in the morning, laying on the floor

Head aching, wiping the dried blood off her lips,

Wanting to get to school before another hit > > > >

Brother opening up the door, hearing Mommy's screams

Rushing in to protect sister, trying to keep the money snug

They need it to survive; Mommy just needs it for drugs > > > >

Staying home alone again, mustn't let the neighbors know

Uncle coming by to "check" on her, going to her bed for a lie

Being caught against her will again, not allowing herself to cry > > > >

Hey, you! Yes, you! I'm talking to you! Don't walk away from me.

I'm tired of this shit. Forget all the fuckin' rhyming in this "poem"

I'm going free verse now, and you'd better listen.

Stop looking around like you have no idea!
I'm talking to you! I'm fuckin' talking to you!

You read the magazines, you know all the stories.

Even if you haven't heard them all, you know

Every one is so damn similar; it's the same thing everywhere.

Yes, I said everywhere! Are you even trying to listen to me?

It happens everywhere! Not just other countries!
Not just other states, other cities, even other neighborhoods!

It's all around you, and you're not doing a thing!

Any one of those kids you see around you every day could be abuse victims.

The shy little boy in school with dirty clothes, the vibrant teenage girl on top of fashion

The baby girl that never cries, the 12-year-old boy who always kicks ass in baseball

Intelligent, dumb, pretty, ugly, social, nonsocial, short, tall, talented/gifted, average

There is no feature that will let the child go overlooked, not even rich or poor

It is abundant, malicious, and unselective of its victims. They don't have a choice.

But you do, you do, you could help and you're not doing anything about it.

Righteous hate fills me at the thought of someone hurting any precious child

I was sitting outside with my great-grandmother over the weekend

When two little girls rushed across the street on their bikes, and I waved

After a few minutes, they came up to us, smaller one first, looking down at her shoes.

I said hi, told her to sit, and she barely glanced up, everyone knows I'm great with kids

But I had to look directly into her eyes and give her my very best smile

Before she ever said or did anything at all, except to breathe.

She perked right up after that, I couldn't get her to stop talking

Once the older sister realized it was okay, she came over too.

I played with them for over 3 hrs that day. They lived only two houses down.

Their mother had told them that the earliest they could be back home was after 9 pm

Their names are Amber and Brittany. They are eight and six, shoved out of the house.

All they needed was a little attention. All they wanted was someone to show they cared.

They came back the next day, and their little black eyes were pleading with me.

Once again sheepish as they gave me a flower and a plastic necklace, not looking at me

As if I had changed during the night, and it was something they couldn't bear

My great-grandmother had complained to me since yesterday about them

How their mother was fat, a slob, just disgusting and worthless, never did anything

How their father had hair all down his back, road a motorcycle and probably drank

How the kids were always running around the neighborhood alone all day

How they were always disruptive in church, and the last she had heard, had lice

I wanted to tell her that at least they were coming to church, but she was on a roll

How they were never going to amount to anything, how I shouldn't be around them

I was so angry at her. She didn't even know them, and she was trashing them

Eight and six years old! For God's sake, sounds like they have to take care of themselves!

I decided to play with them, to try to give them the attention, the love they deserve

To hell with lice and everything else, I gave them piggyback rides and ice cream

I walked around town with them, or tried to play with them in the yard

Anything I could do was better than having them out in the streets

I have no way of knowing if they are victims, if they are trapped in a living nightmare

I may never see them again, and they may not remember me

But just the fact that I tried, it has to mean something, somewhere, to someone

I'd like to kill anyone who even thinks about hurting any of the hundred kids I know

It could be any one of those kids out there. We have to do something, at least have to try.

You, yes you. I'm talking to you. I'm talking to everyone.

From the kid to the teenage to the young adult to the adult to the elderly,

We CANNOT be silent when those kids are being robbed of their innocence each minute!

The victims could be counting on us, or it could hit us next, & we wouldn't even know it

If we don't take the time to pay attention, to care, it could be too late

We read all the magazines, we hear all the stories

We have assumptions in the back of our head, twangs in our heart

But we don't do anything, we say "It's not our place or job, and they're not our kids."

We make up all these excuses, but these kids don't make this choice to be abused

They can't help it, and most can't get themselves out even if they try

Did you know that child abuse/neglect kills millions if not billions of kids each year?
Did you know that child abuse is still the #1 leading cause of psychological damage?

If we know all of this, than why aren't we talking? Why won't people stop hurting them?

Why aren't we trying to help in some way? Why don't we do something about it?