I fled. I fled when I was bursting.
With a smile on my face.
Knives stuck in my body.
Nobody saw them.
Nobody saw me.
The ones who did, saw me
As a victim, as another chance,
As an endless opportunity to do harm,
To empower themselves and rid me of my name,
To do to me what they wanted to
Never caring that somebody had destroyed and twisted
My language, but you all find each other,
You all know each other, your games and patterns inside-out,
You leave traces, condemned ones, wherever you go
So you know you can play, so they know my body
Is a playground, an elastic band that you can pull
And braid and annihilate, always coming back to itself,
The traces of you and your actions,
And I lost nouns and verbs, they all meant another thing,
A body without a language, a language without a body,
Everything was cut off precisely, disconnected cleanly,
I must have agreed to things I did not comprehend,
To words that promised me treasures in old bottomless barrels
Where I’d get stuck looking for love and affection
And you’d take me, from all sides, absorb me,
And I still tried to look attractive
Even though I felt death within me,
Motionlessness, fear, concentrated and lingering,
The pressure to be still and please,
To utter things against my own body
And call it pleasure, call it lust,
And I fled when I had the chance,
I always did, turn my back on you,
I fled when poetry put its arms around me,
When literature imbued me with my own voice
Once more, at all,
I felt my bones rise,
My voice in my mouth,
The muscles that are mine,
And language cascaded through my blood
And rinsed and washed my body clean,
Baptised me on my own terms
And you became the dust you always had been.