An excerpt from my upcoming release, Broken Places, coming soon from Booktrope! Continuing along the same vein as my third book Broken Pieces (available from Amazon in digital format, print from Booktrope everywhere), I continue to write nonfiction essays and poetry about love, loss, grief, sexual abuse, and relationships in raw, sometimes graphic detail. This, is Shame.
*Trigger Warning — contains graphic language and references of sexual assault*
Shame doesn’t like to talk. She prefers to walk through a room, the center of attention, the girl that all the boys dream of, all eyes on her, flash and heels and lips and eyes, and hair.
Shame is the one everyone talks about but nobody talks to.
Shame wears pretty, tiny bits of clothes, fancy makeup, and drives a cool red fast car, the kind all little girls dream of when they play with their Barbies. She has all the hottest boyfriends, and even the occasional hot girlfriend, who shows up late to the cool kids’ parties as if she’s too good to be there anyway, and besides, ‘this place blows,’ she tells her jock hottie of the day, as she sashays her tiny hips poured into her ‘$1200 a pop paid for by daddy’ jeans out the door to the next coke-fueled gig.
Shame has a secret. Shame saturates herself with distractions, partying all day and all night because she’s desperately sad, filled with the loneliness of the lost, her heart a shell scraped so deep because she left it in an alley one night with her pride and her virginity when one large man pinched and shoved and filled and grabbed in ways she cringes to remember, in tears and rages, in nightmares and flashes she can’t ever discuss with another human.
Because he was an animal and that makes her one, too.
Shame carries this animal in her skin, unable to shake his eyes boring into hers as she fought and kicked while he held her down, sticking his furious cock into her. As she watched from above, she wondered aloud why he even needed to bother with a live girl, if all he wanted was a hole, he could have just as easily found some sort of household appliance to stick it in. A hole was a hole was a hole.
But he didn’t hear her mumbled words.
Nobody hears Shame. They follow her, watching her every move, but they don’t see her. They don’t see her terror, how she shakes alone in her room at night, how she wakes up covered in the slimy sweat of the animal, smelling his stink, flashing on his fetid breath, his flaccid penis finally moving away from her face, forever wiping his semen from her lips in the hour-long, skin-burning hot showers she takes
scrubbing away that which will never fucking die.
Nobody talks to Shame. They look at her, they stare at her, but they don’t embrace her. She’s not one of them. She’s this creature, this thing nobody will ever love or soothe, or even acknowledge. Shame knows this.
She was born out of fear and terror and hurt. She knows that she is nobody’s friend.
Because, after all, who wants to be friends with Shame?
(copyright 2014, Rachel Thompson, not to be reprinted without the author’s permission. Broken Places, 2014.)
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