screamity scream

No.

I spent too much of my life 

not knowing how to say 

          No. 

I was small and ignorant

Thought yes was the only answer

Because when I said 

          No. 

He said “it’s okay.” 

So I thought

          No

Didn’t matter

I grew up and learned

Say 

          No

To drugs, to alcohol

Soon I said yes to those too

To the things I wanted

To say 

          No

To; I said yes

And then 

Finally

Again

I repeated 

          No 

So many times

I thought my tongue would only 

Ever know that word

And then again

A new one whispered

“It’s okay” 

So again I thought

          No 

Didn’t matter

I was screaming it

In my head

In my chest

With my body

With my silence

With my fear

With the cold, icy feeling 

That left me frozen

Unable to say 

          No

Out loud

Because no one ever

Listened 

I spent so long

Unable to say 

          No. 

But now I know how

I know I can

And when they say,

“It’s okay”

I can still say,

          No. 

Now I don’t just

Say it

Scream

It

I scream it until

They hear me

Because once,

They didn’t accept my 

          No

So now I won’t

Accept their yes. 

Their “it’s okay”

Because

          No

It’s not. 

And I am not afraid 

To scream 

          No

Anymore.