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Lost voice

The first time I lost my voice
Was not my choice
Don't tell anyone he said
They will kill me
And I didn't want him to end up dead
But in my head
I didn't want him to touch me there
He said anyway no one will believe you
Cause you like it, so don't act scared
And I will say it's not true
I'm a good boy and you're a girl
So I curled my no up inside
While parts of me died

The second time I lost my voice
Was not my choice
I didn't want to hug him
And I said no
But my mother, she, would not let it go
And in my head
I wanted to run away instead
But she said have some manners
You are being raised up
Not dragged up
And my no, became a yes
I guess

The third time I lost my voice
Was not by choice
I told my teacher
That my mother was a beater
Because that was the procedure
They said
But no one would be believer her
Your mother is good woman and she does her best
You should try to trouble her less
And behave yourself
So I withheld my nos
And chose, something else

The fourth time I lost my voice
Was not by choice
All the boys
Grabbed me and dragged me away
And while I prayed that someone would save me
No one came
And the shame of it all
Crept and leapt in me in that stall
And when the bump grew
And no one knew about what had happened
They called me slut, a whore and more
And when I could not name my baby's father
My family threw me out
And my stories turned about inside me
No longer fighting to be free

The fifth time I lost my voice
Was not my choice
I could not even choose between bitter and better
I just wanted to forget her
Her being that younger me and her being my baby
Taken from me and given away
I had no say in the matter
Voices, voices, voices just battered me
To agreement
And she was placed with my parents
And I could not protect her
So I wanted to no longer remember
And sex took care of that
And alcohol took care of that
And drugs took care of that
Kind of
Cause I could not outrun myself
Could only shelve
Parts of me in addiction
Until I disappeared
Or so I hoped or feared

The sixth time I lost my voice
Was my choice
For I had no more voice left to lose
He said he loved me
But cursed me
Cheated on me
Punched me with forces so deadly
I lost my front teeth
I had bruised and bloody cheeks
Lips so thick I could not speak
And no one would believe me
Or said I had asked for it
Or why didn't I leave
Even though I had nowhere to go
But the streets
And I was not going back there
So I stayed there
Feeling choice-less
Abandoned and alone

The first time I found my voice again
Was one day
when a stranger, not even family or friend
Stopped to say
I see you
I see your stories
Your failures, but also your coming glories
And until you have stood in your own strength
You will never know
What it feels like to let go of things that broke you
But never served you
And you will never know what it means to save you
From what enslaves you
And my voice rose from my chest
In a gasp that became a scream
A stream of truth telling
And it was as if I had awoken from a nightmare
That I would dream no more
For my voice was claiming space
Is claiming space
And will not be silenced as it had been before
This, this, this is a new phase
Of me
Giving Voice to Me


© 2018

Artwork Credit: © Phantom Pain By Marilyn Kalish

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