were you there

your gaze burns my face

from across the room.

I can tell what you're looking for,

but how can I tell you

it isn't me?

My fingers are made of feathers,

my legs tremble with each step,

I'm a bird who never learned to fly,

a mermaid in search of a tail,

while you profess fairy tales,

I turn away.

"Forever," you press your lips to my neck

"I will be yours forever.

I've been with you for always.

Never will I leave your side."

But I know too much to believe

your liquid lullabies.

I know it's just another part of your game

to score a night, to win me for a date,

but I'm not so naive.

You see the scars on my hands,

and tell me "No,

girl, if you were with me, you wouldn't have

to hurt anymore."

And I look at you with fire in my eyes,

as if you could repair this damage.

Were you there 

when a man who promised me

the love of a father,

took from me 

what I did not wish to give.

Were you there

when the boy who had professed to love me

forced himself into my body

because I would not give up

everything for him.

Were you there

when I knelt on the floor,

vision blurred with sleeping pills

arms and hands seeping blood

from all the sorrow spilled.

And still, I found will to live,

to go on,

to smile,

without a man holding my hand every mile.

How can you pretend to know me

and tell me what is right

when you can only limp in the shoes

I've sprinted in

my whole life.

The End

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