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My Journey From Trauma To Touch - A Poem

Can trauma soften when we confront it?

I’ve kept a secret well hidden
For years and years
My fear of touch.
My visions of terror;
My hostile storm to be free
Of thought, vulnerability
Howls fathoms deep through
Years of coping unhealthily
But there was another vision still
I could not quite recall
A blurry figure
Dark, drunk, angry, tall
Heavy of grip, terror of eye
A recurring role in
My nightmarish nights
I could not place why
Or how to stop
I learnt to ignore
My thoughts
As they say, move on
But I could not touch,
Or hug, or feel
I rejected any kind of
Sometimes so bad
Were the dreams I’d had
I’d shout and scream,
Compete with my heart beat
Tears, pillows, fears
I could not understand, only run
The best way to get away from
This dark figure, angry, drunk.
Years of avoidance
Guilt, confusion
Till I understood these nightmares
Were not just delusion
Back when I was small and younger
A dark being had once loomed over
I had no escape, I was trapped,
in anger, afraid, distraught
Overpowered by weight
Close to me, they went beyond
My physical boundaries, my mental bond
I buried the incident, it’s what denial is for,
Confused myself I hadn’t seen what I saw
He does not know, but my anger remained
As my sense of vigilance to avoid the pain
I realized why I could not touch
If mine was violated, whom could I trust?
But, I learnt about trauma and how it shows
Through ways in myself, and my sense of control
Slowly now, I learn to express
I laugh, I cry, I do not repress
But maybe if I’d stood up that day
Today I could hug, touch, not shy away?
I wish I could tell my younger self
To stand up, fight and express
But I hug my self now and touch the part
My desiring, resilient, loving heart
Years of denial left me wondering though
Is consent a feeling, more than just a "no"?
How would one know if they'd crossed a line
If 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. 
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