Today I didn’t send the children to their room as knots formed in my belly at the sound of your key in the door I didn’t scan for warning signs in your eyes on your breath, how you moved, cover bruises with make-up and lies I didn’t grill your pork chop just-so smooth every lump from your mash for you to throw the plate across the room I didn’t bounce off the wall from the fist I didn’t see coming, feel your hands around my throat, lose my breath I didn’t pretend to be asleep as you came up to bed hoping you wouldn’t drag me out by my hair get in with me to do worse I didn’t bleed from my busted nose losing our baby which you kicked out of me yelling that it wasn’t yours. Last night I put a knife under my pillow. Tomorrow I will hold my head up.
Jill Abram is Director of Malika's Poetry Kitchen, a collective encouraging craft, community and development. She grew up in Manchester and now lives in London. Jill created and curates Stablemates – a series of poetry salons, each of which features three poets from one publisher.