Poem: No, oxi, nein

When you held the knife at my throat
and told me not to cry,
while pressing it harder and drawing a short trickle of blood,
involuntary tears trickled down my face. 

I gritted my teeth at my impending demise;
my fury at your audacity
of the choices exacted upon me
of the choices extracted from me.

I whispered ‘no’ quietly at first,
shrinking from your blade
as your sneering spittle flecked my already damp face.

I tried not to swallow as you outlined my limited options
and tried to digest the dearth of any alternative
the suffocating finality of this dense atmosphere.

After a time, I blinked and the tears stopped.
I blinked again and my teeth ground harder.

I blinked once more, and swallowed,
my throat sliding painfully over your blade drawing more of that unnerving
I shook in fear but feared your blade no more:
I pressed against it, as you continued to impress its futility upon me.

The trickle became a stream
but I did not blink again and no more tears ran
as I forced myself up to my full height.

You shouted at my audacity,
stomping your foot petulantly
repeating ‘my’ options.

Aware of the stream becoming a river, still I didn’t blink against dry eyes,
Saying instead
and quite simply,


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