New Poet Works; "I am NOT a perfect man" by Forrest Robert Stepnowski

"I am NOT a perfect man"

by Forrest Robert Stepnowski


I am NOT a perfect man

I stare intensely at the mirror

Wondering where all the gray and wrinkles came from

Was it the years of deceit?

Was it the years of the flashings, lashings and bashings?

Was it my childhood that put me in a shelter and institution?

Was it my days in junior high school where I was told I was different?

Was it the theory of reunification SOME people hoped for?

Or was it the pain, the hurt, the suffering, or the illness gifted to me by the hands of another?

I am not a perfect man

Images of my past constantly flash before my eyes

The nightmares from my childhood

The taunts, the statements, the forced sexual encounters

I am told I could have imagined these things

I still see the scars upon my face, arms, and soul

I still feel the icy breath from his mouth when he told me to just... breathe

I still taste the sweat that fell from my conqueror's brow

Imagined?

A bit farcical to say I imagined the pain, the blood, the trauma, the bite marks that lasted for weeks

I am not a perfect man

I still remember the scissors I took to my arms and wrist

The blade was as cold as his touch against my cheek

My blood dripped like hot lava spewing out of a volcano in a passionate rage

Was this imagined as well my dear sir?

The one who is depressed because he could not protect me in my youth?

The one who spouts heroic gestures, but realized it's years too late?

I prayed for my fairytale ending for many decades

Hoping I would have prince charming swoop me up and save me from this pain that has lasted forever

This pain that psychological experts called "PTSD" so that my call for help could be "billable"

I am not a perfect man

I have failed many in my lifetime

I am far from being the father/mother of the year

Is this because I am just a lazy couch potato?

Is it it because I was afraid of repeating the past?

Am I my own rendition of Shirley Bassey's "History Repeating"?

I am terrorized by my scars, both mental and physical

I am woken by images of my past to the point I continue to feel and relive the agony my young body felt

Until I open my red blistered eyes...

And breathe

I am not a perfect man

But I am now having my midlife crisis

I am reliving the images over and over again

I gasped for air as I try to shake off the images of rape, strangulation as my mouth is covered to muffle my screams, and beatings

But than I escape into memories that bring me joy, comfort, peace

The monsters from my past no longer have power over me

I learned to forgive them long ago

Not for their own peace of mind, but for my own

I am empowered

I silence the voices that call me in the late evenings in my sleep

I rise above the pollution they filled my head with

I sing out a song or two of hope, laughter, and peaceful tranquility

I may be alot of things

I am not a perfect man

but I am a survivor







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