well, i grew up watching everything fall apart,
in a house where terror was normal
and safety, nonexistent.

i used to be so good at denying things
to myself: food, love, the truth.

told myself and the rest of the world
"i'm happy, so happy"

while my ribs pushed further and further
from my skin, and while i was spending
every saturday night

with my alcoholic boyfriend, wishing
i was dead.

(he never hit me. i said so two days ago
and i was achingly casual; i could hardly believe it.
it's true - he didn't. but that doesn't mean
the things he did were any better.)

my journal is disturbingly silent on the subject -
as though he never made me cry - never took
the things i lost.

but he did. a thousand thousand times.

i lied to myself, though. i
was always good at that.

.

.

.

now, i can't do any of those things.
i wake up screaming, and the truth
is torn from me, filling notebooks and
my boyfriend's ears.

my bones are padded with soft flesh,
my lips overflow with stories and memories,
my hands shake with honesty and relief,

but still my nights are full of fear
and my eyes are haunted, haunted.