Many years ago a woman lay sprawled on a table,
legs in stirrups and a sheet draped over her knees.
The blade sliced her gut and the little rebel was pulled forcefully from her womb.
A baby rolling with giggles and blubber toddled through childhood in an eager manner.
Yet in the care of another there was gnashing of teeth and somewhere chemicals leeched.
Then the storms rolled in.
Every day was a battle.
This once joyous babe was at war with the world.
She chased others with daggers when opposition arose.
Only muttering a please or a thank you,
never both in a phrase.
She insisted on going last and uttering no, but was fierce with frustration if questioning her preference was omitted.
Through high school she fell in with the daredevils and fighters.
She hurled curses at those closest to her.
Meanwhile, she linked elbows with fools, manipulators, abusers.
One foul night she gave herself to a boy full of false promises
and that dark hour he robbed just a little more of her innocence.
Gurgling remorse with a bottle of Jack
she snuffed out regret
and blamed loved ones for missteps.
In college she would lay on floors,
passed out from indulgence
and men would grope her.
She claimed assaults but then denied those claims.
Flip-flopping tales and weaving a web of continuous lies.
Surprisingly, one day she capped her head
and took the receipt of her accolades.
Now she could crunch numbers for others
all while squandering away her own.
One day she bled onto a towel
and her grief lay dormant
but friends and family begrudgingly sighed relief.
After that moment and a couple of envious years at one who had followed accepted projections,
she packed a bag
and drove on the dusty road.
Thinking she’d find Nirvana, she set forth to blaze a new destruction.
She made a disturbing vow
and less than a year in
broke it by tangling lips with lies yet again,
somehow believing this would be different,
fresh and anew.
Her body lay ravaged as she gave it so freely,
not recognizing her potential or worth,
Now a beggar with oiled hair from lack of bathing, teeth stained yellow by copious Mountain Dew consumption, she draws breaths on the stick, puffing out billows of smoke
and watches the life she had hoped for dash to the ground as she flicks ashes towards California’s quaking rubble.
*Loved ones bow, feverishly praying, questioning how to assist, asking for wisdom when fury abuses. Needing to forgive, but not knowing how, and bestowing compassion that isn’t received or returned makes relatives weary, reluctant. Oh God, grant insight and a right spirit for all in this inferno.