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dreaming of goddesses, sunflowers and italian sunshine.

Message from Writer

comments and peer reviews mean the absolute world to me!

the poems + a note

November 13, 2018


so it's a day since i posted about my experience with the wtw censorship, and more importantly, my sexual assault. the comments i've received at this point (nov. 13, 5:09 pm) have been wonderful.

sending support and love from somewhere kinda close where the rain has stopped. isn't it beautiful that the rain has stopped? 
i don't know why this made me cry so much - maybe cause i was in class when i read it, and when i turned to the window i noticed for the first time that the rain had ended. (we must be close, then.) it's sort of drizzling now. but the sentiment kind of hit me really hard. (also, yes, you are a supremely weird older sister) your entire comment, in general, was genuinely one of the best i've ever received. thank you so, so much, elle.

i'm a little nervous that posting these poems might result in my account being suspended or deleted since i've had about 5 pieces taken down at this point. if my account disappears soon, i promise it wasn't me. fight wtw to the death. after all, the terms do say:

"WTW retains the right to: (i) remove such User Submissions from the WTW Website, (ii) terminate the account of any User responsible for such User Submissions, etc."

but here we go, since a couple of you encouraged me to put them back up and i really want to.

he was always your favorite;
big cousin big clothes big smiles
and you can remember begin twirled around the room to mozart,

a concerto that he was eager for you to hear
and live and be

head spinning, eyes wide shut
wearing that white blouse with red lipstick stains
and tight jeans that barely fit you

he ruffled your hair,
even now you wonder if it was a sign:
the way he watched you dance
the way he held you close,

but when you were little
it was the most natural thing 
big cousin
knows how to cheer me up
big cousin
stays by my side

you wonder now how long he watched you
if he used that window above the shower 
to watch you dance, naked, under the steam

or considered it
tapping on your bedroom wall when you were fast asleep
seeing you in his mind:
what would you wear?

did he imagine your young body 
in silk;

and the day you wore silk
he must have decided it was time.

times he kissed your neck - 2
times he kissed your hair - 8
times he kissed your cheeks - 12

times you said no - 3
times you said stop - 14
times he didn't listen - 17

times you wanted to die - 4
minutes it happened - 4
times you wanted to scream - 4

times he touched your waist - 5
times he touched your hair - 3
times he touched your stomach 2
times he touched your neck - 6

times he called you a baby - 6
times you wish he hadn't - 6
times he proved you right - 6

times you suffered - 6,857
times it started - 1
times it ended  -1

times you survived - 1

i. when he was finished with you, you stumbled into the shower. you could hear your mom yelling. you weren't supposed to shower; you were about to get in the car. but there were ants crawling all over your skin, and the taste of his kisses on your head. you threw the clothes you had been wearing across the room. they felt radioactive.

ii. you knelt down under the running water. it was too hot; your skin was turning red. you didn't care. you grabbed the brush and scrubbed your neck and butt and stomach until it bled and crimson currents were chasing the water down the drain. you'd taken off several layers of skin - at least now his hands hadn't touched you. at least you couldn't feel him lingering on you.

iii. the pajamas you'd been wearing were tossed across the bathroom. even now, a week later, you can't look at that shirt without remembering him. you sleep without blankets because blankets remind you of his arms around your chest. suffocating you. stopping your heartbeat.

iv. two days ago, you were at your aunt's house. other side of the family. baby cousins, six and four. they tickled you. and all of a sudden he was there again, and you were screaming, and screaming, and screaming so loud the neighbors knocked on the door to ask if everything was okay.

v. the neighbors were right. everything is not okay.

vi. but yesterday you let your mom hold your hand while you cried. yesterday, you hugged your dad. today, your mother touched you and you didn't jump. today, someone said his name. lucas. you didn't cry.

vii. today, you typed out his name.

viii. tomorrow, you might sleep with blankets on.


See History
  • November 13, 2018 - 4:26pm (Now Viewing)

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  • Jun Lei

    and now i'm crying. i wish i could say something that changed anything. i wish so much. and nothing happens. and i know it might sound useless, but dear god, i am so sorry.
    i've read your later pieces about how you've healed, and i just want to say--i admire you so so so much. for writing about a pain this deep. for speaking even after you are silenced.
    for being a fucking gorgeous person who's going to blow the world away.

    6 days ago
  • ghostlyglory

    i realize you wrote these a while ago but i had to say that i found these to be so raw and so poignant i had to take a few deep breaths to recover. i deeply hope that you create more art and that you find the catharsis that you deserve. (also wtw?? wtf??)

    much love xxx

    about 1 year ago
  • palindrome

    I am so sorry! Your writing is beautiful and so real. They better not take this or you down. You are so brave! W
    Write free, everyone!

    over 1 year ago
  • Anha

    if wtw makes you disappear, i swear it'll be a revolution. you are a central part of what this site is, your activism and heart, your poetry advanced beyond your years. even though you're 13, you wouldn't believe how much i look up to you. i absolutely agree with elle in that you should put yourself forward with your writing, especially if wtw does make you disappear. the things you've been through are heartbreaking, but your strength to continue is what makes you amazing. i'm so proud of you, and keep writing free.

    over 1 year ago
  • she’s-got-a-story

    you should enter this series into the scholastic art and writing awards. it's a contest for middle and high school students and it's super prestigious and stuff. I've won regional before and this poem series is perfect and wonderful and definitely on the level they're looking for.
    link for contest:
    If you enter (it's $5 but so worth it): submit the poems all together in one doc, and apply for the American Voices award if it's available
    I highly highly highly recommend this. its soooo worth entering there's lots of scholarships available at the national level.

    over 1 year ago
  • paperbird

    These are really heartbreaking and inspiring and I hope time has worked to heal you. I read these poems before they were taken down months previously and I had forgotten how emotional and well-written they are. Anyway, I hope you can heal and further use poetry to tell how you feel, no matter the cost.

    over 1 year ago
  • she’s-got-a-story


    over 1 year ago