Don’t put your hands on me

any question asked above a whisper

becomes rhetorical

when he reaches out his fist

and grabs my arm and the back

of my dress and twists me around

like a marionette


i am a grown woman

my family is not near

no one has bounced off

the initial threat of never

touching a hair on my head

and no one will come to my defense


he has my hand

raised up in the air

by the flesh of my forearm

by now, my dress

is all twisted around

and i am hissing

that is not the way

you touch a woman

I will call the police

and I will take you down

unless you take your hands

off me right now


and, thank god, he does it

the next thing i know,

i’m grabbing all of his clothes

and throwing them into the hallway

along with him, before i lock the door



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