I Hold My Breath

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

I hold my breath as I shift in bed, afraid he may wake up.

I turn away when he looks at me, afraid he’ll see my fear.

I creep through the house, afraid he’ll shout that I’m too loud.

I wear long-sleeve shirts, afraid others will see my bruises.

I watch as others stare at me, witnesses to my shame.


I tell myself I have no choices, afraid the one I make, may be worse.

I hide a bag with basic things, afraid I may need to flee.

I squirrel away cash, afraid of having nothing.

I smile and say I’m fine, afraid someone will see the truth.

I call the hotline when he’s gone, afraid someone will answer.


I use a false name for the shelter’s phone number, afraid he’ll discover my plan.

I pretend the vodka bottles don’t exist, afraid he won’t have enough to pass out.

I refill his Percocet, afraid the alcohol won’t do its job.

I pretend to read my book, watching him starting to doze.

I wait, afraid I’ll never be free, and at last, unafraid.

Submitted: June 25, 2021

© Copyright 2021 Avery Stark. All rights reserved.

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Add Your Comments:



Wow, isn't freedom beautiful once you're able to attain it...

Fri, June 25th, 2021 5:41pm


Yes, it is.

Sat, June 26th, 2021 10:39am

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