top of page


Updated: 23 hours ago

I don't necessarily like the taste of tea.

It's the enforced break from my rushing inner world

that rewards.

Once the tea has steeped

the short window of time

between scalding

and tepid

invites timely reflection.

Holding nearly boiling water to my lips

requires focus

away from the computer's ever-present


So I sit

hot cup in hand

lifting the painted china


feeling the warmth

trickle down

into my innards.

My thoughts calm their ceaseless swirling.

I admire the deep color

leaching from the tea bag.

The silent sun

reflecting in

from the snowy trees outside.

I tip up my eyes

from the teacup

noticing the last clinging dried leaves

on the branches outside

bowed down with their bright layer of ice.

I breathe in deeply

smelling the lemony herbs

from my cup

its steam briefly

fogging my glasses.

I smell woodlands

damp and earthy

the scent carried in from this morning's snowshoe hike

lifting off my clothes

as they dry by the fire.

My mind rests quietly

in the present

like a bird perched

on my hand.

I sit still

fearing any motion

or stray thought

might scare her away

in a puff of feathers.

Another sip

and my muscles release tension

from that last clamber

up the snowy hill

back onto my street.

Remembering the fog of breath

bursting from my neck gaiter

to glaze my glasses.

Coating from steam

or from warm breath

both fade quickly

leaving me clear-eyed.

Ready to continue my day.

But now with a finger

on the pulse

of the present moment.


I accelerate onto the freeway

trees flashing by

and my assured solitude tickles awake a memory.

An unbidden flicker

quiet as snow on sand.

A piece of my child self

hidden by adult skin.

That piece forbids movement

leaving me as if

dead inside.

She whispers

close my eyes

turn off the switch to my ears

numb my skin

shutter my brain

stay alive.

Don't feel

because therein lies danger

the possibility of bursting out into the world

curtains opening

flooding me with sights

and sounds

and worst of all

remembered sensations.

I hold tightly to the wheel

carefully follow the painted lines

while the terror of his touch

floods back into my bones


ripping out stitches.

The overpowering wave

touches my grown skin

and mind

and heart.

I cannot keep it in

I cannot stop it

from all but drowning me

in its awful


Hard on the heels

of the released anguish

the acknowledged horror

the dread

famished for attention

comes very real


Highway markers count upwards

while anger

from my adult bones

pushes me

to open my eyes

unblock my ears

unstill my legs

and free my arms.

This anger demands



kicking my way

out of the oblivion

that used to be safest.

I carefully watch the speed limit

stay in my lane

letting the storm rage.

No-one can interrupt me

at 65 miles an hour.

I remember

the safety of the closed bathroom door

one room

where a lock was allowed

just a jail cell

locked from the inside.

No flowering of life there.

No feeling allowed.

The lock on my car door

promises safety to my grown self

now enclosing a wall

of angry child skin

which can no longer countenance



forcing messages

past squinched lids

stopped ears

numb nerve endings.

This anger

though fearful

is my salvation.

I am learning

to speak

to yell.

Here in my head

I peel away child skin

from woman skin

separate the past

from accompanying highway trees

and my hands

curve tightly

around the steering wheel.

I am becoming more whole.

I have risen

from my child's bedsheets

looked around

and found myself





no longer required

to remain silent

the last hide-and-seek player

who waits

not knowing that her little friends

have all gone home

and given up the search.

The time for hiding is over.

Now I can scream

and the power that bubbles up

from deep in my gut

is exhilarating.

My heart races

even though I sit

serenely in my adult world

behind the wheel

the horizon spreading before me.

A veil lifts off my face

with my released breath.

I take in deep drafts

and blow them out

snorting like a charging horse

free to move






My voice

silenced for so long

no longer waits

to tell my story.

He did this

to me.

1 view0 comments

Recent Posts

See All