By: Jennifer Brierly
A Spoken Word by Jennifer Brierly
My therapist suggested writing a “victim’s impact statement”
“A statement,” she says
As though words exist in dashes and lines
what my life consists of since that day
Passing years. Months. Weeks
where to begin, were I able to speak.
The cold hammer of trauma
tension and drama
has already met the faberge egg of memory
An impact itself may not be what it seems
Here, I’m wiping away the remnants
of last night’s dreams
still stuck to the insides of my eyelids
hazy, chocolate cobwebs
dazed, cold, my peace ebbs
And I have no fight
Not then and not now
But I’m starting to learn how much my voice matters
Do the echoes of our stories follow you?
Do you pause to listen?
Do we break through?
Or does the beat just go on and you do what you do?
Statistics with faces
It’s uncomfortable, that’s true
Does our presence make a statement?
Does it have an impact?
As far as we’ve come, we still need so much more
We need women not scared to be labeled as “whores”
“Trashy” or “Easy”
I’m still called a liar
Chin up, sisters or brothers
Hold your head higher
Don’t let them see the rain fall.
If I could piece together this fragmented soul
Show tangibly, while incomplete
I’m still whole
a quiet determination
I exhale restoration.
and my pulse is morse code
tapping out the names of my mother. my daughter. my grandsons.
imagery transcends language
and I see the tiniest stitches deeply embroidered around the edges of my heart
Jewel tones creating the most delicate tapestry of promise.
Ashes buried over feather
lightening flashes in spring weather
Your consent taken
The ugliest violation
for that you grieve. you mourn.
But once evil gripped him, though he left a victim
It’s Then That A Phoenix was born.
Phoenix, RISE.-Jennifer Brierly
—Keep Still Being Here. JB