Your words wrap around my neck like
bitter, cold hands on a winter’s morning.
They cut through the depths of my being
forcing my once-strong body to retract in,
seeking refuge and solace in itself.
Your arms, once safe and warm
have turned into hammers
forcing their will over me and
reminding me that I am
and always will be
much smaller than you.

Your words cut through me like
nails on a chalk board and
send me quivering into a corner,
dazed and confused,
wondering where I went so wrong.
Your eyes, once welcoming and sincere
have turned into daggers
judging every move I make and
waiting for me falter
so you can throw my words back at me and
stomp away victoriously.

Your words shatter my soul like
glass that gives under the weight that
it can’t quite hold alone.
I am a box stamped “FRAGILE”
and you, the disgruntled USPS worker,
take joy in the act of
throwing me in the back of the truck
in spite of my bright-red lettered warning
glaring back at you.
That once-handsome crooked smile has
taken on a life of its own.

You were once mesmerized by my
beauty and strength and thoughts and
now, it seems, you’re waiting–
for me to fall.