Saturday, June 10, 2017

The Knife

These rules I live by are my own
Plant them and watch them grow
like the muscadine vines. I first seen them in the south, at our first house; and damn, I
          remember the french doors and the bold woodwork and the sparse grass and
          the red dirt and the heat and the poverty of our neighbors. That southern sun is
          something else, we built a swing on the oak tree and of course I was introduced
          to sweet tea, but the vines, I'll never forget. They covered the trellis and moved
          to the shed and again with the sunlight, but also, the evening thunderstorms and
          that was us baby. You would wake me to the sound of thunder and stand
          terrifyingly, knife in hand
you said that you would do it
if I leave. 
and there you were, 
a silhouette of terror 
you turned on the damn lights
and that was the last time

hold the knife
over our bed
balance it 
on the razor's edge
see where that gets you 
with all your goddamn threats

hold the knife
over my head
see where that gets you
did it ever cut through
the lies when I said that you were the love of my life?

hold the knife
and blame your father
who buried you alive
because the Lord told him to

hold the knife
and tell me another
story of your mother
starving you since you came out the womb early

hold the knife
and just one more time
I wish it wasn't a flashback
of my own parents' life
but it was
and so much more and baby you should've married a goddamn knife

because I found a way out and a way to get on with my goddamn life.

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