in those three words, i was born
‘you are useless’
and in the others spewed, thereon i grew
‘you are a failure’
‘you are worthless’
‘you are nothing’
oh, how i loved the taste!
the bitterness that spread across my tongue
it was never enough, i needed more
than scathing words and endless tears
i remember the day i came of age.
the moon cut the darkness from which i emerged
when the palm of a hand wrenched me from the womb
i was whole, anew – from the nest i flew.