after you

after you
my body has become a field of wild flowers
sacred soil that gives the herbs i keep in my kitchen their fragrance
i don’t know how my body knew when to give in
but your touch is my deliverance
the answer to every desperate plea, every faltering prayer i never knew will be returned.

after you
every stretch mark, every birth mark and birthing mark
every scar, every flaw, every bump and dip on my body
feel like newly discovered land.
when at first you asked me, do you know how beautiful you are?
i was at a loss and wanted to say, can’t you see i am anything but?

after you
i see myself and i no longer see splinters.
shards, ashes, broken, breaking, shattered.
damaged. unfixable.
i don’t know how my body found itself suddenly upright
after being bent for so long.

after you
i no longer feel like a touch is a break-in
a look, an invasion
silence is no more a death threat
every door shall not be locked for fear of someone barging in
and slowly, i’m learning not to turn my head every two steps to check if someone is following me
scheming my exit route even before entering.

after you
i still have fears that keep me awake at night
that i’ll be punished for loving you so much
the echoes of a distant nightmare still ring in my ears
‘I will kill him. I will kill him. I will kill him.
Whore, you will never set eyes on him again’.

but after you
there is only now.
and sometimes, the dream of tomorrow.
although i know all too well this too might end in some painful goodbye
my heart dances with victory that you are a demarcation in my life
and there will only be after-
after you.

©Tsion B., 2017