Worlds Away

what the nomad brought home

This is Treason


Sometimes, war is silent.
And he advances in the night to hide his crimes.
His teenage consort — stoic, young, and good
At keeping secrets — is unwilling,
But adrenaline confounds before she can distinguish friend
From foe.
Surprise attacks disarm as he takes
Mountains first, then valley, and insists
Her pounding heart and quickened breath
Bespeak the thrill of conquest.
These are missions that he can’t complete alone.
Against her flesh, an unmistakable contour
Threatens as he orders her to come;
Only cowards walk away, she tells herself,
And tries to prove she’s strong enough
To hold the line unaided.  No one wants to be discovered
So exposed.

But then,
He draws his sword and stares her down.
His weapon at her throat, knees on her chest,
An unexpected standoff,
While screaming eyes beg why? for lips that wouldn’t dare
Pronounce their protest;
If she parted them, she’d gag.
I’m weak, he pleads,
Then binds her arms
And reprimands the prisoner:  you know we have to stop.
He charges south along the fertile warzone of
Her body, slides a hand into the quiver, and she arches
Like a bow about to snap.
Once more, she tries to swing a weak defense —
He grabs her wrist and laughs…
Too dazed to be convinced she ever really fought at all,
She shuts her eyes, demoralized by guilt, and time

….for years.

A heavy hand is placed over her mouth to snuff resistance
  —  Shhhh!
Defiant legs are trembling as they strain to hold the distance —
Then muffled cries subside
As she goes numb.
She turns her head.
The war is lost.
And a smile
Surveys the spoils as betrayal burns her face.
He compensates her efforts with a devastating kiss.

We’re accomplices, he whispers.
See what you make me do?
Take our secret to the grave because

She’d kill you, if she knew.

Consider this my contribution for Women’s History Month.  But remember, men are violated every day as well.  The song I chose to accompany this piece, “El duelo” (“The Duel”), is a chilling acoustic duet between Chilean group La Ley (male vocals by Beto Cuevas) and Mexican singer Ely Guerra, about intimate violence, confusion, and pain.  It set the mood for my writing process this time but has actually been a favorite song since high school.

But on to an issue more important than music.  For you, I wish two things — first, that you find this poem completely unrelatable.  Truly, I would love for everyone to be able to read this and think, “I don’t get it.”  But if, instead, you hear yourself saying “Never again,” then I wish, by God, that you may be right.

Absolve yourself.  Peace.

Regrettably, I’m still on a work-induced hiatus from WordPress, but I felt that these were words that needed to be spoken, and spoken now. I look forward to returning in coming weeks and catching up on everyone’s inspiring writing.

March 9, 2009 - Posted by | Poetry, Sex, Uncategorized, Woman | , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , ,


  1. so, i see, like me you have been long not around, but i am happy to return and happy to still found something new from you. even from long ago. hope to see something new soon.
    and for the poem…. it hold much… i just love the first line, it sets everything in motion. importent issue and your statment as well.
    shame the link do not work, always nice to get into the poet feeling.

    Comment by utopianfragments | May 4, 2009 | Reply

  2. Powerful and chilling. Great work.

    Comment by zouxzoux | May 28, 2009 | Reply

  3. Fragments and zouxzoux, thank you very much for stopping by, and I appreciate your encouragement. Nothing new on my part (still recovering from the whirlwind that was my first year of grad school), but I look forward to visiting your own pages more frequently in the coming months. 🙂 I hope all has been very well with both of you!

    Comment by 20yearsfromnow | May 29, 2009 | Reply

    • oh yaaaee. sounds of life. i wish you freshness and joy. nice to hear from you

      Comment by Utopian Fragments | May 29, 2009 | Reply

  4. Strong words that create vivid scenes. I do ‘get’ the violence — emotional, mostly, making me think of the battered woman’s syndrome (BWS) — which reminds me of scenes from the 2005 film “The Quiet” starring Elisha Cuthbert and Camilla Belle.

    I especially like the effect of the italicized lines — whisper-like, yet all the more threatening (made my arms shiver).

    Best of luck on your graduate studies. 😉

    Comment by S.L. Corsua | June 2, 2009 | Reply

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