Understand from Life & Love Vol. I

You don’t get to tell me how to breathe,

What pain to feel,

Or the time it should take me to heal,

You’re not in my shoes,

Suppressing the need to release emotion,

Trying to be strong on this roller coaster,

The darkness is not comforting,

Trying to hide behind the pain of it all,

Like saying no and someone still climbing on top of you,

Naive to the fact that maybe that’s just how men treat you,

So you give thinking that’s how it’s meant to me,

The root of your pain lies in the taking,

From little girl to woman,

Becoming transfixed and saying to hell with it,

You become ingrained in the confines of your own sex,

Thinking their arms can provide shelter,

From the flashbacks of the physical abuse and the first time,

You think everyone is out to get you,

Trust comes hard when so many men have hurt you,

To become invalidated and your pain thrown out the window,

Being told this is a man’s world,

You should push aside your ego,

Massages turned to the him climbing on top of you and you never speaking a word of it because who would believe you,

When you invited him to your room,

Because you trusted the good in him and you didn’t think that he would hurt you,

So you don’t get to tell me how to grieve,

How to feel,

How to release,

I won’t just pray and sit on the sidelines,

When so many feel the same I feel,

I can’t sleep in the dark,

Night lights have always been my friend,

A curiosity about sex that I’ve struggled with,

Damaged goods,

Used over and over because I hated being alone,

I found myself desperately wanting to be comforted,

Was told to pray,

God has a plan for you anyway,

Just smile,

Silently hurting,

The battle cries of millions,

Put your hurt aside and smile,

You probably provoked him anyway,

With your tight jeans or your short shorts,

Maybe he wanted to know why you was so covered up,

Maybe he wanted to tell his friends they should run a train on you because you were incoherent,

Besides no one told you to get that drunk,

So if something happened to you it was your own fault,

If he hadn’t been there to overhear,

That’d be one more tragedy to hold dear,

But he couldn’t’t be there for the other times,

When you’re a virgin and he doesn’t want anyone else to have you,

So he physically assaults you and almost rapes you but gets caught so he stops for the moment,

Naive little girl thinks it was supposed to be that way,

You don’t get to tell her how to feel,

You don’t know the emotions that rage through her,

Every man that ever claimed to love her took advantage of her,

Her kindness was her weakness,

She always wanted to see the good in everyone,

She turned to pornography and alcohol addiction,

Her story is still being written,

But the millions of others,

She feels their pain too,

The backlash of others,

They aren’t compassionate too,

Blind to understanding and showing empathy,

So when the tears are shed,

They aren’t asking for sympathy,

But to be heard and understood,

That they are people too,

Yes I am a woman,

We have voices too,

Yes I am black,

My life matters too,

Yes I am a minority,

No I didn’t come from Africa,

Truth be told we are all immigrants on Natives land,

Truth be told we are all human and bleed red,

Truth be told it could be your wife, sister, mother, brother, daughter or son next,

Truth be told people pray without acting more,

Truth be told I mourn for every minority,

Everyone who has been affected in a negative way,

I am sympathetic and understand,

I am a minority in the palms of the land,

I understand the need to cry,

I understand you but I am a Soldier and I have my orders too,

I understand you,

You are not alone,

I understand when you doubt the God on the throne,

I understand that you don’t want attention but to feel valid,

I understand your need to fear being alone,

I understand why you can become prisoner in your mind,

I understand why you must feel forsaken anyway,

I understand your anger and why you want to fight,

I understand your pain,

I hear your cries,

It moves me inside and out,

I write,

It touches my heart and embodies my mind,

Please don’t think you have to commit suicide,

I’ve been there,

I understand it hurts,

But you and me,

We can change the world,

If no one else care to listen to you,

If no one else cares to understand you,

If no one else cares,

I am listening…..

Taneisha

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