[I am assaulted in a public park]
but the walk home is like any other.
I stand, clear the woodchips from my knee,
and there are sprinklers hissing in the distance,
drooling over uncut lawns, and
there’s that sky too—black, with a tint
of violet—a whole bruise if you will,
or something like one. Breathtaking
overhang of damage. Or else, just a sky.
Once, I was a girl carrying a neighborhood
friend on my back. His weight was not so
crushing, though the two of us
were slightly bent, adjusting
to one another like prescriptions.
Blood seeped from his knees and I
could think only of fruit, the soft red
kind that grows softer with age and
neglect. This is not dissimilar,
though in many ways, it is.
I still carried a man home. And like
blood, his semen stained my clothes.
I am trying to put a comfort in this,
something to say that it happened
but that it also ended. Tiny crescent
of hope, like a nail splintering.
Listen. I dragged home a mouthful of seeds.
This is only a poem about it.
The Author’s Last Rape Poem
Because I’m through with
The quiet shift in
We struggle to reckon with
It goes like
I say, a destruction has
We sit at a table with
Talk only of
The hole, still
No remedy for
Some kind of feeling to
Parse first, the locations of
No, that will not
Do you know my
Language is a
What I mean is
What do I
Haven’t I already said I’m
There’s nothing in the lines about
The sky was clear when
The morning after was
If we name the moral, it’s
Either way, I
To kill the
Can’t describe the
Sick of every
Aren’t you tired of
Aren’t you bored of
And what is left of
In my grief, I
Still, I dream of
I won’t say I
I won’t say
Spencer Williams is from Chula Vista, California. She is the author of the chapbook Alien Pink (The Atlas Review, 2017) and has work featured in Apogee, Bright Wall/Dark Room, PANK, Always Crashing, and more. She received BAs in English and Cinematic Arts from University of Iowa, and is currently an MFA candidate in poetry at Rutgers University-Newark.