Weary, I slump in the trenches

My soldier’s heart beats fast,

Numbs my mind and fires my senses.

You would think that peace would reign supreme

That the scar tissue would protect me from

The spectres of my dreams.

But sometimes ‘it’ pierces through the fog of this normality.

Triggering the deepest pain

And I fail to figure

That the war is over.

And still, sometimes,

Not too often, thank god

I find myself immobilized

Haunted by your victorious silent near annihilation of me

The not to be spoken of past

The historical amnesia.

There’s no flag waving of surrender

Since I have long fled to safer land,

Higher ground

There’s no hysterical self – destruction

Since I have recomposed my life.

There is though, a pervasive sadness

That no peace treaty

No olive branch was attached

To the dead thud of divorce, court and denial.

You revel in your freedom

Dictators despise those they once oppressed.

And enjoy the territory I once loved,

The spoils of war, the fox holed cowardly silence

Of your domestic retreat and comrades

My name not to be uttered as if a breach of protocol.

I forge a wild path to peace

Wandering alone, somewhat dazed

Not quite at home, but knowing

I wouldn’t want to live in the shadows of that town

In the haze of lies.

The light of day stings my eyes

And the brutal truth hurts,

But it does set me free.

This poetry is written by a domestic violence survivor and author in one of the Broken to Brilliant books.

Her words behind her smile tell a picture of domestic violence, framed in poetry. She has used story-telling as a mode of survival and recovery.

In the spirit of reconciliation Broken to Brilliant acknowledges the Traditional Custodians of country throughout Australia and their connections to land, sea and community. We pay our respect to their elders past and present and extend that respect to all Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander peoples today.'

Broken to Brilliant would like to pay our respects to those who have been killed as a result of domestic violence, our thoughts and prayers are with you and your loved ones. 

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