i shut my eyes

and await the tears

that will but stain my cheeks

just like he stains my dignity

every time he puts his hand on me.

i feel the pain surface

not from the blows to my face

but from the state of helplessness

that i’ve been dragged into

by the man whose name i bear.

i open my eyes

and see my tormentor descending

into the dark as i lie numb

and silently beg for forgiveness

for everything i did that led me here.