A Public Sphere for Poetry, Politics, and Nature
I embrace my Indian sister of the Dalit caste sentenced to gang rape, made to walk the dirt streets naked for my brother’s crime of marrying a woman of higher caste, my chaste breasts trembling with terror before elders’ narrowed eyes.
I embrace the girl fondled by a Catholic clergyman, forced to blow the Eucharist of his pasty cock, my silence shipwrecked on drugs and alcohol suicide, while the priest sucks the coddled thumbs of cover-up.
I embrace the woman raped to draw ethnic boundaries—in Bosnia to cleanse, to birth Serbian babies, in Darfur to humiliate and control non-Arabs, in Columbia to punish rival gangs.
I embrace the incested child forced to carry a child, lover and daughter to a father who snuck in my bedroom and laid his body over my dreams, swearing girls like it, should suckle his blessings.
Me, too, my womb bearing the savagery of hate and ignorance, my cunt ravaged by fist, dirty nails. The hot whisper, I asked for it. And the cheap political rhetoric by white conservatives in red ties who do nothing but legislate my body.
As for those conservative zealots, reject their lies. Stand against the misogynists who harass, heckle, rape, shame–who break my family into believers and nonbelievers.
I know. I believe us. Me, too.
Copyright 2017 Lindsey Royce