A POEM BY JOCELYN MACDONALD
When after 30 minutes I can’t finish him,
he knees my shoulders to the couch and pisses on my face.
That part never changes,
but this time
my eyes snap open, I reach for his throat.
And instead of laughing at me and yanking my wrists and screaming at me not to go, that it was
just a joke, in place of that hot air
he strains to catch his breath where my thumbs crush his Adam’s Apple.
Although this time I’m strong enough to push him off of me, I don’t because this time instead of
running upstairs, chased to the car where he keeps grabbing the handle until I floor it
in reverse, this time I’m not going anywhere,
and he does not pull free though he fights.
I vise his body between the couch and coffee table until
his shoulders rest on the basement floor; in my fantasy there is no rug.
Tonight I will not exchange a chain of shaky hand-rolled cigarettes for sleep, instead I wrap my thighs around his ribs and squeeze,
I may be up all night in this version, but instead of looking at myself
in the mirror, peeling my wet hair back from my face saying not again not again, this time I’ll call the cops (but then there is no rape kit for when someone pisses on your face, and they would just take my favorite blouse as evidence if they admitted me at all);
instead I look straight into his eyes, grab him by the shoulders
and slam him into the floor,
that post, my father would call a pencil neck, rubber pencilling
as I thud his head against the floor again and again until
he passes out under me.
This is how I handle the situation
whenever I flash back: whenever someone mocks Woody Allen’s former stepdaughter, whenever someone harasses me on the street or the bus, whenever someone dismisses me saying boys will be boys or your anger isn’t helpinganything and whenever, of all the times when a lover, sincerely, lovingly pins me to a mattress like I often crave but one percent of the time hysterically fear.
Instead of crying, instead of begging to be believed, my thighs
clench, my fingers sweat,
the moves are like choreography
the way I’ve practiced in the half-dreams before I sleep.
This time I finish him.
Artwork © Amanda Kerdahi M.