Hungry Men (a poem)


I tried to ignore him and his slithering and his conversation

But his words felt predatory

And I felt bitten

By a man whose thirst was aggravated

One who was hungry for things reserved normally for innocence and melancholy.

I felt like I had been bitten by a pet I once cared for

A constrictor or a boa maybe

Like a lover who I had parted ways with peacefully but now had pictures of my naked body beneath the send key

For a moment, I tried to redeem myself

Gave him parts of my stories

Share with him what was killing me softly

In hopes that he’d imagine what it feels like

And find compassion

But what black women give black men in hopes they’d protect, sometimes gets lost underneath layers of appetite

Hoping that in abuse, he’d see her worthy of rescue rather than available for another round

In perversion, he’d touch her gently rather than pull her trigers

In discord, he’d speak to her with respect rather than heap more piles of trash upon her spirit

And it’s not that we lack the ability to protect and comfort ourselves

but some traps are made needing multiple minds to escape from

Some dungeons can only be opened from the outside

Needing more than viewers or clickers when I am broken

I am not click bait

But I’ve been baited by person’s who knew my screams would be muzzled

Captured by men who know that bawdy is more distracting than the bruises on it

My extremities, he said, excited enough ecstasy

That I become a euphemism for estate rather than evidence

I am not sex on museum walls, I am a museum

My story is Sistine chapel

My heart is the space between two fingers needing to touch to be whole or healed and reminiscent

The appetite of persons, that should have been for ministering to the broken-hearted, but have been perverted to hunger for the more wicked courses.

And women who were once girls, are given lust in place of love

and treated as possession instead of prize

Because sometimes no sounds like “pay me first”

And sometimes no sounds like “you can make me famous?”

And sometimes no sounds like “are you sure this is okay, daddy?”

And sometimes no sounds like yes

Especially when she’s drunk

Especially when she made promises to someone else

Especially when she’s not old enough to regret this tomorrow

or he’s not old enough to know sex with the adult babysitter is molestation

I gave him my story

Told him that at 10, and 21, and even 27 I said yes hoping I’d survive til later

And my friend, instead of loving me

He bite my throat

Dragged my damaged body along the floor

Was sure to hit all the pot holes and depressions as he endured me

When all the blood had leaked out

He stuffed my remains in a pillow case and buried them

And when he wants, he digs me up and takes a bite

imagines himself and me hungrily

And I feel bitten all over again



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