“If I write about it, it is real”
I say when she asks me why I wrote such tender words for her
but I can’t do it for myself.
The ink makes it real, makes it touchable, gives it weight.
It stops being a bad dream once I can see it.
I know it happened, it was, it is real but I don’t want to know
because knowing brings regret as a plus one to a party I no longer want to attend
and I’m trapped inside.
Sometimes I still can feel the weight of his hand as it hit my skin,
not tender touches but as Rage, the man, as Disappointment.
His face turns from father to Revenge and there’s nothing I can do to stop it
so I cry while it lasts.
Grandma picks me up that night and cares for my wounds;
she cleans, balms, and kisses them trying to make me whole again.
But she flinches when she hears the words “cops” and “jail.”
I miss school for weeks, the bruises too real, too fresh to be faced directly.
Their shadows still hunt me whenever I look at the mirror.
Five years later he threatened to do it again, but this time I smile and say
“Hit me as much as you want, don’t forget to darken the pink of my skin,
to memorize the curves of my face,
the way my tears roll down and how breaking something holy feels.
Make sure to remember it.”
Burn in yourself the image of the little girl spinning in her new dress and how she grew
to take care of you and your sons, how your daughter was,
is, still soft after all.
“If I write about it, is real,”
I say to her, to myself.
I’m still learning how to look my reflection in the eyes
but I stand proud of leaving through it.
Fabricia is a 18 years old student who only recently found the strength to face her past, walk away from the toxic people around her and face her demons while trying to heal her wounds.