uMalume Wam'

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Status: Finished  |  Genre: Horror  |  House: Booksie Classic

A poem written by Mthokozisi Khotseng.

Title: uMalume Wam
Poet: Mthokozisi Khotseng 
I am 8 when he first barges into my body
8 when I turn a thing I don't know how to defend 
he's 38 when he locks the bedroom door & tells me to take off my clothes
38 when he takes my innocence 
8 when I'm told to keep my trap shut
to trap all the shout I have in my trap mouth 
39 when he tells me all boys are touched like that
that men love like that
& that I, soon to be man 
should also love like that
9 & I don't know if I want to
to be a man or to love so roughly 
he's 40 when he tells me he loves my small waist
10 when I eat my way into a bigger one
11 when I tell my mom I'm don't feel safe around him 
37 when she dismisses me & leaves me with him anyway
12 when he goes at it, at me all night long
12 I suffer a panic attack at the family cookout the day after
my grandma's 70 when she prescribes an exorcism
says umsebenzi will do away with all the demons 
my demons
13 when I lose my auntie to AIDS
& my hands to rage 
14 when I come out to my friends
he's 44 when he tells me he wants me
15 when I first try to fight him off
45 he overpowers me, 
then proceeds to beat me to a pulp for rebuffing his advances 
16 when I run away from home
find solace at a friend's
he's 46 when he finds & drags me from my friends' to his
thereupon spirals out of the rails
into a sick rage
my cage of a body is made to take 
& keep
16 when I starting believing I deserve it
17 when I test positive for HIV
17 when I start cutting 
18 when I decide to reoccupy every fear laden corner of my broken body
18 when I say no & mean it
not that I didn't before
he's 49 when he realises I'm not scared of him anymore
that I'm not scared of any of it anymore 
still queer
still HIV positive, so still dying faster than you
still looking for the lesson in my L
still looking for a happy in my ending

Submitted: May 10, 2020

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