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  • Samantha Hoch

I need your hand

Updated: Nov 7, 2019

The pieces of her life lay shattered on the floor

Still spiraling from a kinetic outburst

She’s the one meant to tidy them up.

Hot streams of regret drip from her face

And soak through the gloss of children’s hair

As she offers the comfort of a melody

The wincing ridges of her forehead

Offer a different tune.

The weight of his steps collapse the ice sheath

Hardening the crunch of crystalline snow

Marring the porcelain face of nature

Forging small voids of destruction along his way.

His snow-caked boots propel him forward

The flickering light of a neon sign

Beckons him further from home.

She starts at the thumps of little feet

Small noises like these stab through her.

She masks her irritability

As she pats concealer on her skin.

She kisses the tiny foreheads

Rushes through the tiny book

With a gently measured tone

And a camouflaging inflection;

These problems are her own.

Who knows where his emptiness will take him

Through a rolling collapse of self, no doubt.

He’ll come home with a heart

Full of remorse

Shaky hands offering a new piece of life;

Promises not to shatter it again.

She’ll lay awake in anticipation,

Trembling at the possibilities.

Though every reverberating footstep

Pounds through her like an angry fist

She’ll pretend to be asleep.

His affections will consume her battered frame

Her apprehension would only disturb him

So she’ll absorb his whiskey exhale

With the repentance that his lips force upon hers

She won’t know how to turn him away.

She’ll continue to offer rationalization

As she paints a glossier truth

She’ll lighten her paces and soften her tone

She’ll tell her family “Everything’s fine;”

Her eyes will tell you otherwise.

Her absence often with lack of reason

Will precede a bouquet of excuses.

A floral fragrance acts as a veil

The stench of a lie will go unnoticed

Unless you decide to open your eyes.

The bruises and limping will worsen,

The children will inherit his aggression

Unless you take my hand in time.

Hurry up because I can’t leave him

I know I don’t have the strength.

I can’t bear for my children to be him

Or fall victim to his strike.

I need your hand to pull me up

Because without it I will stay down.

The weight of his boots collapse my dignity

Forging small voids of destruction in my mind

Please don’t turn your back on me,

It’s going to cost me my life.

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