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16 Days of Activism - Day 12

Written by Rev. Dr. Karen Georgia Thompson, Associate General Minister for Wider Church Ministries and Operations and Co-Executive for Global Ministries, United Church of Christ

Domestic violence continues to be a major problem globally. This poem, written over 25 years ago, reflects a reality that is common for many. It is a reality that is often accompanied by sexual violence and at times death. As people of faith, we must continue to advocate for a world in which this is no longer a reality for anyone.


yesterday I thought about leaving

a thought inspired by the bruise on my cheek

again you apologized, told me how you loved me

said if you couldn't have me you'd be better off dead.

i remembered last week, when with jealousy in your eyes

you punched me right there in the street

you said you were sorry, were driven by my lies

i knew then that i needed to fly.

i no longer love you

how could i when,

you communicate with your fists and feet,

i am not grounded by love, but by obligation

a conclusion reached after much observation.

i observe my life with you (in retrospect)

you took me from my parents at a young age

you said they didn't want me, said they didn't care

said you'd always love me, and would always be there.

after so many broken bones, bruises and black eyes

i knew that it all had to end

i dreamed about leaving, but always stayed

knowing you would love me to death someday.

here i am today with my family looking on

tears in their eyes - i know they care

i can't help but wonder about what might have been

since i'd rather be anywhere but here

with a bullet lodged in my brain.



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