What do you do when your entire healing process
feels like the beginning of a murder ballad?
I realized that what he had done was not right
in the middle of the night in some faraway June.
I somehow fell asleep after that. Woke up
the next morning, the floor below me
trembling, a kitchen knife in my hand
for a split second. There isn’t a way
for me to be honest and tell you
I haven’t ever wanted revenge
at the same time. I do remember his full name,
but I do not say it out loud. I scrubbed
any evidence of him out of me,
and now I reek of Good Survivor.
I am not supposed to fantasize
about dropping a lit match in his jeans.
I am not supposed to have imagined
my fist lodged in his Adam’s Apple.
So what does that make me? On his level?
Too angry? A girl in a song only preparing herself
to be left in the water? But I don’t think
I’m as hungry as I’m making myself out to be.
The truth is: if I ever saw him on the street,
I would cross to the other side and hide myself
in the nearest shop. That doesn’t mean
I still haven’t woken up every morning
thinking God has left a weapon in my hand
in hopes of the river inside of me
— Look Beneath the Floorboards, Lydia Havens