Welcome to another writer’s quote/poem Wednesday, where I share some of my favourite poems written by other authors. I have always loved the quote above my Maya Angelou and try to keep it at the back of my mind, always. It also goes with today’s poem, which is a narrative by Ernest Hilbert that runs on the simple theme that – love is blinding to some.
The main character is someone who should have ended up going to jail at the end of the poem, but rather, he was headed to the altar to get hitched. Like the last line said, “don’t try to understand what another person means by love”.
Here’s the poem below.
Domestic Situation by Ernest Hilbert
Maybe you’ve heard about this. Maybe not.
A man came home and chucked his girlfriend’s cat
In the wood chipper. This really happened.
Dinner wasn’t ready on time. A lot
Of other little things went wrong. He spat
On her father, who came out when he learned
About it. He also broke her pinky,
Stole her checks, and got her sister pregnant.
But she stood by him, stood strong, through it all,
Because she loved him. She loved him, you see.
She actually said that, and then she went
And married him. She felt some unique call.
Don’t try to understand what another
Person means by love. Don’t even bother.
He told her rhyming,
Was a thing of the past;
So she took up free verses,
To appeal to his good side;
He fed her sweet words,
And she chewed on with pride;
For when someone says I love you,
They can do you know harm.
He called her his sun,
For she lit up his life;
And failed to see the effect,
of his storm on her light;
When his fist miss the wall,
Colliding with her;
He would bandage them in kisses,
One too many a time.
She bloomed off his words,
Blindsided to the fact,
She had the sunlight and the oxygen,
All within her- to thrive.
He drained her of passion,
Imprinting her with scars;
Left her lying in a pool,
Of her blood and his lies.
Like a bee after honey,
He comes back around;
But an encounter with death
At his hand, was the last.
Now she’s picked up her pen,
And writes poetry in rhymes;
about the man who stole her light,
taught her to thrive in the dark;
I see you conceal dark circles
And apply your mascara,
I hear you silence your sniffles
With pillow every night,
I see you cover with henna
The bruises on your arms,
But I know, oh mother
Who the knight Is In the battle.
He calls you names like lousy
Scarring you with his venom,
And he claims he does love you
Body and soul, fist and punches,
You take his storm and thunder
Shielding us under the weather,
Love and mercy go hand in hand
And his is just one sided.
He exposes your errors
Shaming you even in public,
And you shrink with every word
Antagonizing your existence,
And your kids are your solace
To us, you are a temple,
You’ve been fighting this battle
We say- it’s time you retire.
He can’t hurt you anymore
For your kids will be your armor,
And the patience you practiced
From your lord will be your reward,
Take one step into the pathway
There’s a whole world beyond this,
It is time to break the shackles
And step into liberation.