(c) all rights reserved · dverse · exploitation · family · poetry · PTSD

dVerse — Dead Woman Walking

chalk outline cartoonimage link

Scene of the Crime



daughter of a barmaid and a factory worker
abandoned by one and brainwashed by another
six is old enough to fend for yourself; mothers are for sissies
tape recordings leave little room for editing without skillz

sister of a bonded brother and caretaker of six charges
teasing punching teasing punching hurling objects breed bonds
dirty diapers stinking in wet pails, hot dogs and mac & cheese
calls on the dot from the bar they’ll be home in a little while

friend and lover of assorted white trash, lonely freaks, stalkers, and abusers/exploiters
boys trying to steal kisses respond with punches when denied
kids of violent drunks get drunk and violent
victims seek out victims for this, that, and the other

grandchild in patchwork cottage at the bottom of the hill
second home, surrogate mother, symbiosis
chores for grub, gentle comb through matted hair
Lawrence Welk, Hawaii 5-0, and Mannix

fair game for kin with predatory proclivities
manifestation ghosted by everyone but their targets
but oh the legends of their violations laughed
from oblivious cruel lips

Cause of Death:
Mortal twisting at core

Corpse Animators:
see poems

Sarah is today’s host at d’Verse. Sarah says:

So feel free to give me a detailed description of what you see in the mirror, or to use that as a springboard to head off in an unexpected direction. Give me a portrait of yourself as an extended metaphor – maybe you see yourself as a cat, or a jar of pickles. Tell me about an incident that sums you up, or made you wonder about your identity. Hog the limelight for a moment or two. Stand up on the bar and let’s have a look at you.

53 thoughts on “dVerse — Dead Woman Walking

  1. Within all of these words…..abandoned, brainwashed, punching, teasing, hurling, stinking wet pails, stalkers, abusers, violent drunks etc, are these words
    ” gentle comb through matted hair” .
    In my reading, these words are the kindness one needs to live and love through whatever life throws at us. These words have a special place here.

    Liked by 1 person

  2. All those facets, all working to make you. I wanted to reach through the screen and hug that child. I thought about the poem you wrote about your son a few weeks ago – what a different experience you have given him.

    Liked by 1 person

  3. Wow, Lisa, that was different. I too wanted to reach into the poem and hug that child. I could feel the ‘teasing punching teasing punching hurling objects’ and smell the ‘dirty diapers stinking in wet pails’. These lines made me shiver:
    ‘fair game for kin with predatory proclivities
    manifestation ghosted by everyone but their targets
    but oh the legends of their violations laughed
    from oblivious cruel lips’.
    You came out of it so beautiful and loving, and I’m so pleased I know you, albeit virtually. 😉

    Liked by 1 person

  4. Oh, sister, I, too, want to just wrap a sheltering, comforting arm around this child. One wonders, sometimes, how things (at least occasionally) work out in the end.
    Very impressive selfie. L.

    Liked by 1 person

  5. Oh, Lisa. If I could, I would give you a great big hug. This is so saddening to read, it brought tears to my eyes. The poignancy and pain in this alone… I too want to hug the child inside, the child in this poem, and any child who goes through this. I’m sending you much love, and I’ll be keeping you in my thoughts. ❤

    Liked by 1 person

  6. I believe the woman you see in the mirror has overcome the harshest of childhoods to become a loving and caring mother. Your mirror must show you a brave woman!

    Liked by 1 person

    1. Dwight, that childhood did twist me at my core and due diligence in processing so much of it has allowed me a much better quality of living than during those times. The core remains damaged but is shored up with excellent supports which I consider best-case scenario. Thank you for your comment.

      Liked by 1 person

  7. This was very painful for me to read, as a mother. and as a human being. I am so sorry for what you suffered as a child. Thank you for sharing your journey, and I wish you all the healing energy I can offer.

    Liked by 1 person

  8. Really appreciate your stark honesty … people need to know that too many families are like this! So sorry you drew the short straw but it’s made you who you are today.

    Kind caring gentle honest direct resilient with a powerfully strong core. Your kids are blessed you turned all this around 🙂

    Liked by 1 person

    1. You’re right on every part of this. Although I didn’t realize it at the time I think that’s why I chose the job I did, and it helped me immensely in connecting with kids that everyone else had simply written off as lost causes. I pissed off a lot of parents along the way as well.

      Liked by 1 person

  9. I agree. That second stanza was a heart wrencher and pulled us into the sadness of the rest of the poem. If time-travel ever becomes possible, you are going to have a room full of saviors, just from dVerse poets. I’ll be there, too. One line dull me didn’t understand was: tape recordings leave little room for editing without skillz. Does this allude to the police report or the child? Sorry…I can’t stand not to know. Good work, Lisa…xoox

    Liked by 1 person

    1. My dad had mental health issues and part of it was paranoia, persecution complex, agoraphobia, maybe OCD, and other things. In order to keep a grip on reality (seen in retrospect) he had these little rules or beliefs that he passed down to us kids through repetition. When you’ve got these “tape recordings” thrown at you but you’re just a kid, you don’t have a clue what to do with that information. You take it in and believe that’s how the world works. Maybe for a mentally ill person it works that way but it’s not functional when you get out into school, jobs, social settings, etc. Sorry for lengthy explanation it’s the best I can do to explain it. I love the idea of a cohort of protectors traveling back to save that child ❤ Thank You, Judy.


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