By: Mahirah Syed
Content Warning: This article includes mentions of sexual assault
You urge me to fight back against those who had and would again hurt me
and I reply
“I’ve never been a fighter,
it’s not in my nature.
Not in the flat of my palms or
the alcove of my collarbone or
even in the crinkle of my cheek.
But, eventually I will be 30
and there will be another girl that is 20
and I will be finally allowed to
You look at me with disdain as you mark me a defeatist. And maybe I am.
I have felt conquered,
devoured by almost all the men that have shared my body and my womb.
Rape and the eating of women is as old as father time himself.
Taking my supple and tender flesh and stowing it between their wretched fangs and gashing until I am the rabbit inside the frothing mouth of a cocker spaniel.
and chewing. Absorbing
all the pieces of me
where hummingbirds warbled, otters tread upstream
and where the gypsophilas grew with the willows in my uterus.
My tendons are mawed and mangled, as my fuselage of flesh convulses on pavement.
I know the honey of my breast and cinnamon of my pate will never suffice the yearning void in the bulging empties of the fiends.
The hard sharpened dagger poking
through their denim
which they bequeath to me
the Greeks bequeathed a stallion to the men of Troy.
But I know that eventually my body shall ache
and wrinkles will be etched
onto my cheeks and into the furrow of my brow.
And there will
a new girl with flushed cheeks
Bright scintillating eyes who have yet to
She is the girl I weep for. She is the girl I once was.
I weep for my imaginings of faeries pirouetting amongst the limbs of the cherry tree.
Mermaids plunging beneath lapis lazuli seas and mushroom circles
adorning even green patches of land.
I weep for how I can now only imagine the numbing grip of your hand on my waist and
vampire bites on my hymen.
that was mine was my flesh and
you took that too.
In a single swipe
I was left
alien in my body and alien
With your desire, you demolished me to assert yourself.
So you tear me in half after half.
A fragmented woman
left to piece herself back together
part by part
Her stinging glass edges do not accidentally slit the veins in her wrist.
You can only stitch someone back together so many times and my aching joints and gashed fingers are so tired of working.
I am so tired and devastated by memories of you.
Fatigued from the memories of beasts who now have also become part of me.
A personal graveyard in my mind indebted to all the foul creatures who knew not how to love.