An angry fella
His face full of red rage
Full of hate
His rancid, putrid breath
Stinking of cheap whiskey
His rotten, decayed teeth
On full display
His brain shut off
To rhyme or reason
His visceral thoughts
A myopic focus.
Staggering forward in false bravado
He’d pick up his well worn bat
Caressing it’s end in theatrical play
His old trusted friend
His old acquaintance firmly at hand
In prelude
And for devastating effect
He would smile
His all-knowing smile
And with eyes full of malice
Slurring incoherently
“Smash your fucking face”.
Then tensing at his fullest
He would swing that bat
With all his might
In violence, in vengeful hate
The reward for some small slight
That made him remember
Who he was
A pitiful man
Exercising his daemons
His self-loathing
And his terrible ritual would continue
Now a muscle memory
He would slap her bloodied face
Again and again.
And if she did not fall, or cried or moaned or whimpered
Or if she did not cower or crawl away
Or if she did show the fear
Or respect his twisted brain craved
As close to adulation as he came
If she did not do it
His way
If he did not see it
His way
“That bitch”
He would kick her for the justice
He demanded
His way.
And as she laid down in her own blood
And as she laid down in pain
While that pathetic bastard had
His way.
In silence
In her shame…
To take his own anguish away
That angry man
That coward
That wife beater
All the while
Our survivor would pray
Her tears would mix with her blood
Pooling again
On that oh so stained floor
Which had seen this play
Play out this encore
This time though enough was enough
Inside her a barrier
Taunt from years of abuse
Beyond breaking point
Finally snapped
Shattering Into a thousand pieces
And she saw the universal truth
One she had tried so hard
To put aside
To ignore
This dangerous game
He would not stop
Or change
For this was his way
Why he had sought her out in the first place.
For nine times she had left him
And nine times she had returned
Nine incomprehensible times
To us
But not to her
The denier of history
To replicate
Her fate.
This time though
With new resolve
She reached an escape velocity
An escape trajectory
This time she would break free of her shackles
He would not bind her
This time she would not come back
This time
He would not own her
This time
She would be the master
Of her destiny.
So this time she fled
She ran away
Far from her land
Away from her people
Away from her shame
Alone, she would have to start again.
The best years of her life behind her.
To fight for existence
To battle her own demons
To fan her own faltering flame
A future yet uncertain
A life of continuous subsistence
But a life that was free.
But a life full of unknowing
Ill prepared
Not required you see
In ignorance of the economy
Now with white fella’s cards
To dig in their claws
To abuse
To misuse
A new ritual
To bash her another way.

For the cycle continues
Despite all our good intentions.
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