(A work in progress: Initial draft)
You think you know me?
You think you understand
what it feels like to feel rusty iron shoved up between your thighs
at the age of nine, crying until your eyes
turned rheumy red, mimicking the blindness that endorsed this
abomination masked as
You think you hear me?
You hear my cry, my voice, my silent holla
as I wave good-bye to you
standing under dappled streetlights, the pavement creaking under the weight
of my souls bereavement
the face that glares back at me from those sealed windows
tightly bolted doors
the curtains screwed together – except i’m the better whore
That’s right. I thought you knew me? Or didn’t I give you my name?
Oh, you want to come up all inside me
Get to know me, as if what counts is on the inside?
Well let me tell you what’s up in here. Twisted fallopian tubes, bruised intestines
pools of congealing blood mixing, mixing
sealed shut with stitches wound tight
dark skin, once soft and fleshy
drawn taut like a stretched leather hide
a tiny hole, not like the orifice you described
Just enough to let the trickle of urine strike the insides
of these interlocked thighs
But shhh – why you laughin’?
Don’t you know silence is the sign of a purified life
As we sit, separated by styrofoam walls
each crouched over porcelain bowls, holes in the creaking, cracking, fecal stained floors
Silence is the sound of my worth. So silently I scream giving birth to Ibrahim, Joseph, what ever it’s called
Silence is the sound of my worth. So silently I piss, not groaning in pain as though my uterus has compacted into a spiked ball, as UTI’s sear through my crouched and quivering form
Silence is the sound of my worth. So silently is how i sit, giving you blank stares as i sit in the clinic for African Mutilation, found in the Elizabeth Garret Anderson Ward off Tottenham Court
road, dumb to your question, oblivious to your silent gestures.
I wanted to cry when they thrust that rusted iron deep into my soul
Seared the pointed needles, kept me drunk on alcohol
I wanted to protest at what they thought was best for me and my chastity
But i didn’t have the words, didn’t have the voice to say, no, this isn’t for me
When you do it, it’s a sign of worth. A symbol of your status as a man of the cloth, a man of honor, virtue, clean and pure,
That scaly foreskin that slips off hardly leaves a dent in your, male principle
Hardly leaves a scar on your manly stature
But when you do it to me…
I am not emasculated – in fact there is no word
I simply cease to exist
I am no more – just a silently screaming hole with a botched up cover holding me together
Till you come to claim me, pin me down, impregnate me
and ignore, this silently screaming horror, like a toothless jaw, wrenched open to envelope your – to envelope you.