Excerpts & Poems



There’s a peaceful moment, a hidden place,

I swoon to after a forceful blow to my face.

 A safe abode of escape in my mind,

free from all the misery and pain;

away from the desecrated way he drove

me insane.

He changed who I use to be,

from a strong courageous woman to a weak subservient,

being who is no longer me.

My soul is entangled, weighed down in his chain of abuse

sustaining bruises, emotional scars

and verbal degradation he would use.

There is no safe place, nowhere from him to hide,

I cry alone, isolated from the world outside.

This man once loved me, once held me with care;

never lifting his fist to me, his foot, nor raising

his voice, he wouldn’t dare.

Outside of my mind, no place is safe for me to run.

I put on a mask amongst others,

my family and friends I shun.

They wouldn’t understand why I allowed this

to go on this way.

How I could stand his abuse day after day.

Perhaps it’s love, the children or that deep inside

I believe he’s a different man.

Or somehow it’s my fault even though I’ve done

the best I can.

Please, don’t criticize me. I’m already confused.

You may not understand,

There is not safe place for me until you’ve walked in my shoes.


The Driver


            Liz walked away and went into the kitchen to text Jessie, "The police are here asking questions about you know what.  They want to question you too." The officer left his card for Jessie to call him when she returns. Jessie reached for her phone on the nightstand after the chime.  She and Jeff were still in bed.  After reading the text message, she put the phone down and carefully climbed out of bed so as not to wake Jeff.  She took her purse and tipped into the bathroom, easing the door closed.

            Jessie closed the lid on the toilet and sat down.  She began to cry silently to herself. The thought of going to jail, facing her parents and facing JB's family was too much to bear. She opened her purse and pulled out a pocked knife.  She was a bit shaky and hesitant at first but slashed both wrists.  She dropped the knife.  “Oh, God,” she whispered.  Jeff opened his eyes and looked around when he heard the sound of the knife dropping to the floor.  Jessie turned towards the sink and turned on the hot water.  She placed her wrist underneath the water and rest her forehead on the side of the sink.  When Jeff heard the water running, he got out of bed and knocked on the door.  “Jess?”

She didn’t answer.  She was bleeding in the sink.  As she became weak, her arms slipped down the side of the sink.  Blood and bloody water was streaming down her arms and onto the floor.  Her forehead slipped off the side of the sink.  She allowed herself to go limp as she went to the floor.  Jeff knocked once more before trying the door.  Still now answer and the door was locked.  Jeff threw himself against the door several times before he finally decided to kick in the door.  “Oh my God, Jess!  Jess!”  He quickly grabbed two washcloths and sat her straight up against the toilet.  Her head was bobbing around as he tied the washcloths to her wrists.  "What have you done, baby?"