I will no longer give you
a name, provide
that much dignity
to greedy fingers that probed
and hurt me and grandmother
when my parents were gone.
Stop, please stop, she cried
as you beat her trying to protect me
until the broomstick took her down.
I learned how to fly when I was eight,
watched you kick me from the ceiling,
while my body lay curled on the floor,
or touch me in evil ways.
An angel’s whisper brought me back
when you left, kissed my bruises
then vanished in a burst of light
until the next time.
If not for her, I could be
the Three Faces of Eve,
made famous in the movies,
one me soaring, another
with my hands ‘round your neck.
The poems of Pris Campbell have appeared in numerous journals and anthologies, including PoetsArtists, Nixes Mate, Rusty Truck, Bicycle Review, Chiron Review, Octopus Review, Boxcar Poetry Review, and Outlaw Poetry. Nominated six times for a Pushcart, the Small Press has published eight collections of her poetry. My Southern Childhood, from Nixes Mate is her most recent book. She has been nominated six times for a Pushcart Prize. A former Clinical Psychologist, sailor and bicyclist until sidelined by ME/CFS in 1990, she makes her home with her husband in the Greater West Palm Beach, Florida.