I woke up one day with a dagger through my heart

it doesn’t hurt, I’m afraid I know what this is about

I don’t want to step out, don’t want people to know;

at this moment my mom walks in, says it’s time to go

She embraces me, says “it’ll be okay”;

My heart sinks, she’s never acted this way.

I look at her for some time with puzzled eyes,

for once-it feels like she does empathize

I brace myself, can’t be late for class again,

but I’m not prepared to look at all these men

there are women too- I knew they’d be;

but the men? Doesn’t make sense to me.

all with daggers just like mine; I want to scream.

Is all this real? or is it just another dream

Some look at us almost apologetically

as if they feel responsible for this tragedy.

That’s when I know- I was right all along

we were all abused sexually, yet we stand strong. 

I’m not as ashamed as I thought I’d be,

probably because I’m tired of hiding my true identity

When their gaze meets mine, it’s overwhelming

how all this while I thought I was alone in fighting

against the circumstances, and it hits me

Do they feel as I do?

Some glance at the wound in my heart

And think the wound is me. If I was not torn apart,

would they still make excuses for me?

Their eyes turn my feet into statues but make me want to flee.

Our lives are more than that scar,

will they take us as we are?

I used to think all they had to offer was fake sympathy.

I was wrong. As we look at each other, 

suddenly I feel like maybe I can recover;

that there’s more to my life than just this dagger.


This poem is inspired by ‘The grace year’ written by Kim Liggett.


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