by Regis Boff

When you are raped it knows you won’t tell

You’ll  wrap it instead in brown paper and take it home to hide

Never expecting it to be pleased

At night  every sleep becomes an invitation for it to climb on you again

flattening your body underneath it

It’s hands fiddling with your skin, and doing  things to you

Wetting you in viscous  drool that rivers over your face and breasts

Murmuring in that low humming pitch of warm August locust  next to your ear, “I see you even now the way you were that day”

When it has finished, it drapes its head over the pillow next to yours, adjusting its curls, and  whispers to you

“Are you dead yet? It won’t be much longer, dear”

I hear the rustle of its sperm hatching inside me

“I am ready to die,” you say to its pleasure

It will relax now, in the quiet old chair next to your bed to watch you cry until it is ready again

Then you  promise it, “No more  dreams for you tonight ,” and you get up for coffee and the bright kitchen light

By morning this is an empty oath

At breakfast, with it across the table from you, the question comes, “What shall we do today?

So casually that you are confused

You walk hand in hand with it, like the lovers you know it must believe you now are

And your deceit can hold no estate in its soul

Once you lose all hope of love, you  disappear into what has hurt you most

Life never allows you to feel nothing at all