love-bite poem

baconWhen I was a child, I spake as a child…

When I was very young, the man who cut out most my tongue was the same woman who held me in the arms of her lover. When I was very young, the woman who cut out most my tongue was the same man who held me in his basement and made me drink from a dog-bowl. They thought it would degrade me but I proved myself. I grew to love my captors, I grew to love the language through which I learned only the beginning of our suffering. When I was very young, the man who cut out most my tongue was the same woman who told me that I would have to choose, eventually, whether to speak from inside or to pretend. He was a wise woman.

Years later, when I was finally ‘released,’ there was nothing that did not seem obvious to me. The world is shit, okay. The world is unfair, okay. Humans are evil, okay. Damn all of them, okay. What I could never learn, what I could never comprehend, was the idea of accidentally biting your own tongue. Accidentally? You did it on purpose, you know you did. It is amazing, Mother used to say. The most beautiful thing in the world. To learn to feel pain by practicing to chew on your own tongue, the most of which was cut out long ago, the love-bite which was cut out of those of us a long time ago.

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