Mayhem Literary Journal is generously sponsored for 2019 by Te Whare Wananga o Waikato, The University of Waikato
issue 5

october 2017

issue 5 - october 2017

A Time When - Lee Kimber

There was a time when
young girls 
compared 
red and purple wounds
on impressionable thighs
and small backs
When loop by loop
the leather slid
from farmers’ tweeds, 
to lick their limbs
And they clung
to the lee 
of the fathers’ legs 
to block the sting 
of their helplessness 
And bruised arms were fine
on hot, short-sleeve days

There was a time when
your leather belt was slick and worn -
the time when I’d fallen 
‘cos your beer was spilled - 
and the pointed tip 
slid from the loops
of your city
jeans
and I remembered
to block the hurt,
to hunch my shoulders,
to bend my legs together

Those were the years
you stole what was left -
even who I was 
letter 
by
letter
And the time when 
I was so tiny,
shrivelled to a place 
where you 
couldn’t 
touch me 
anymore.

Contributor's Note

Lee's quals are in Science and Adult Education, but her dream is to write her life away.

 

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