On the Subject of Childhood Trauma

It’s not that monsters aren’t real—
it’s that they are, just not how you expect.
There are no green scaled dragons,
smoke trailing from molten nostrils,
hiding under your bed. They wouldn’t fit.

But more than that, those monsters could be seen.
The ones in plain sight aren’t scary.
You can define them—
contain them, maybe even vanquish them.

No, it’s the one that clings, claws tucked in
to your shoulder and bladed tongue wrapped
around your ear and whispers acid.

Whispers— Give in. It’s fine.



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