Sunday, 24 March 2013


New Zealand scores shockingly high on the domestic abuse scale. This breaks my heart, and the following poem is what fell out. I want to protect you from the words and imagery used here, but more than I want to protect you, I want to protect those for whom this is a reality. So I'm turning the light on to help us see these things for what they are and to cry out for justice on behalf of the voiceless. 

He’s hurting me.
He’s holding my wrists in his hands and he’s hurting me.
My fists are clenched tight.
His fingers are white.
He towers over me and ties me up with words.
I cower before him and fight to find freedom.
In the struggle I kick
                 and curse
                 and crumble.
My knees hit the floor, hands raised, head lowered.
Limp limbs held fast in his fists.
He throws my hands from his,
telling me I could leave,
but I’d never be able to live without him.
He’s right, I could leave.
But I can’t move.
My body is bound, a heap on the ground.
I find shelter between the wall and the door.
I just don’t know what to do anymore.

My voice cries out to the God above,
“How long, O Lord, must I call for help,
                                  before you will listen?
                                  before you will save?
Why do you wait and watch
while strife unfolds and injustice abounds?
Why are you so far from saving me?
Where are you?"

"Wake up," you whisper, "open your eyes."
The nightmare is over. 
You’re right there, right here.
You’re healing me.
You’re holding my hands in yours and you’re healing me.  
My palms are marred.
Your palms are scarred.
You come to us and cover the corruption between us,
I wait before you and find rest in your freedom.
In your peace I breathe
                and live
                and belong.
My knees are no longer next to my chest
as my body unfolds
and my spirit is told,
you will never leave me nor forsake me.
You’re right, you won’t leave.
With you, I live.
Now I can move.
I know just what to do.