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*Author's note: Trigger warning! This poem is about domestic violence.

She sat in the chair and didn't speak
An ashamed look couldn't hide the bruises on her cheeks

Enraged, I asked, Are you alright
She nodded, but I could feel the pain deep inside her black, swollen eyes

For the one who did this had not one regret
He was the one who shared her life, her children, her bed

Although just a child, I could no longer sit idle and watch while she suffered
It's time to leave him, I had to beg my poor mother

Once too young and utterly helpless to offer her more than love, comfort, and a shoulder to cry on, I now was grown up and her strongest of allies

The sheer strength and courage it must have taken for her to walk out that damn door after twenty seven years is nothing short of amazing

I thank God every day for answering our prayers and guiding her away to safety

My mother is not only a survivor in my own eyes
She's a pioneer in a brutal world too afraid to talk about domestic violence

What goes on behind closed doors is everyone's business
It doesn't just affect the one being abused
It affects the children, the whole family
they've all been tormented and emotionally damaged

Healing takes time but nobody can heal if you lock it all away and don't talk about it any longer
The only one that benefits then is the one that caused it all
like my father

If you or someone you know is being abused, please seek help. There are safe places to go and organizations that will help protect you and your children. National Domestic Violence Hotline 1-800-799-7233

All rights reserved.

©️ Bobbie J. Lowrey 2024

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