by Holly Day
She sits so close to me, pressed against her seat
I can feel the knots down
under her thin skin just by looking at her,
the odd angles, the bones,
the damage of being loved by a man who
tells her, “I will never
hit you again.” I want to lend my body
to her, give her the strength to go home, to pack
her bags, to run, run, run
as far away as she can
but deep inside, I know she will just go home.
Tonight, she’ll cook dinner
arrange carrot spears, brown meat and potatoes
lovingly on a plate
to set before him, ask him about his day.
I wish for her a mouth
full of teeth, calm hands and a voice that doesn’t
when she’s speaking to a stranger on the bus.