I cup my hand
over the starkness
of my right breast.
Like an inverse
pledge of allegiance,
I swear fidelity
to the ruined,
and try to hold
the pain
within my palm.
.
When asked,
I refuse help.
I don’t want them
to see the salt lines
of my disgrace —
the shame
of letting you
wrench the chaos
from where
I’ve kept it
hidden
for decades.
The shame
of letting you
uncork the bottle
that I’ve kept
sealed
with bits of wax
and twine.
The shame
of letting you
pour that shit
everywhere.
Dousing me
with my own
lighter fluid,
and watching,
eyes lit,
as the flames
lick my sanity.
.
When the ash
settles
you tell me
your intentions
were good.
You were only
trying to save me
from the fire.
.
.
.
©Elle Wonders 2017
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