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She Asked For It: A Poem

By Hillary Di Menna

It seems so obvious to the outsider, get hurt, you go.

And that’s what makes them outsiders: the dichotomy of you and them.

So when that person makes those fists – just like dad used to make – and they tell you it isn’t just you and them, it is the two of you against the world, that’s all you got.

White trash can’t get hurt.

As Other, they can not feel.

The beatings and mockery vye for what hurts most, but don’t dare take first place from isolation.

Teachers ignore signs of quiet and retraction amongst bouncy, vibrant peers.

The church keeps secrets hushed behind decorated doors.

The police don’t write up, they write off.

Nurses say, “We don’t use the word rape here.”

A distance is created.

Friends don’t want to believe it.

She asked for it.

They watch and do nothing.

Drinking buddies before hoes dominates so-called progressive punk rock mantras.
Left alone, seeing your valueless and disposability, even you can’t stand being by yourself.

Prosecutions doled by class bracket dictations.

So, you have this guy – who makes fists just like dad used to make – who makes it both of you against the world that doesn’t want you.

You latch.

It’s all you got.

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