I’ve kept a secret well hiddenFor years and yearsMy fear of touch.My visions of terror;My hostile storm to be freeOf thought, vulnerabilityHowls fathoms deep throughYears of coping unhealthilyBut there was another vision stillI could not quite recallA blurry figureDark, drunk, angry, tallHeavy of grip, terror of eyeA recurring role inMy nightmarish nightsI could not place whyOr how to stopI learnt to ignoreMy thoughtsAs they say, move on But I could not touch,Or hug, or feelI rejected any kind ofIntimacySometimes so badWere the dreams I’d hadI’d shout and scream,Compete with my heart beatTears, pillows, fearsI could not understand, only runThe best way to get away fromThis dark figure, angry, drunk.Years of avoidanceGuilt, confusionTill I understood these nightmaresWere not just delusion Back when I was small and youngerA dark being had once loomed overI had no escape, I was trapped,in anger, afraid, distraughtOverpowered by weightClose to me, they went beyondMy physical boundaries, my mental bondI buried the incident, it’s what denial is for,Confused myself I hadn’t seen what I sawHe does not know, but my anger remainedAs my sense of vigilance to avoid the painI realized why I could not touchIf mine was violated, whom could I trust? But, I learnt about trauma and how it showsThrough ways in myself, and my sense of controlSlowly now, I learn to expressI laugh, I cry, I do not repressBut maybe if I’d stood up that dayToday I could hug, touch, not shy away?I wish I could tell my younger selfTo stand up, fight and expressBut I hug my self now and touch the partMy desiring, resilient, loving heart Years of denial left me wondering thoughIs consent a feeling, more than just a "no"?How would one know if they'd crossed a lineIf I never spoke out, but my boundaries were destroyed? Anusha Basu is a 19 year old student of English, who enjoys expressing her emotions through writing and making limericks. You can always find her with a cup of chai, contemplating about her existence, hopefully surrounded by lots of dogs.
My Journey From Trauma To Touch - A Poem
Can trauma soften when we confront it?
The AOI Queer Reading List: Desi Languages Version Queer readings from non-English Indian languages.