It can be hard
when I am nervous.
My heart feels like
it will break my chest
and I can barely think
until a little chuckle
passes through their lips.
When I can utter
a few funny words
I can relax
my beating heart
a little bit.
It is harder when I am angry.
I don’t remember how it came about
but I remember how angry I was when he talked about
going out with me because I was dyslexic, “Who else would?”
A storm in the shape of my torso whirled
inside me but I said I was “fine”.
unable to put words to the storm
until pen hit paper with a vengeance
and I could say, “I don’t need your pity”.
Harder still when I am frightened.
Twice the same boy I barely knew
wrapped his hands around my wrists
trying to pull me on to the floor to dance.
First time I shook my head
and I said nothing.
My fist firmly clenched
my dead weight pulling,
is what saved me.
The second time.
Next to the boyfriend above
I pulled away not saying anything,
my boyfriend doing nothing but laughing
Only when I was able to utter “no”
through the fearful restriction in my throat
did he stop him, still laughing
Should have left that boyfriend then.
Months later I did leave him.
But the emotions whirling
with the slow processing
didn’t help quicken my leaving.