I aspire to be like an earthworm.
How else could I survive
the trauma-soaked debris
that my clients place on my plate?
Unbeknownst to them,
they depend on me to digest it,
making it more acceptable for them
like my mother chewing food from her own plate
and feeding it to me in infancy.
With as little affect as possible—
though sometimes a tear will roll out
without my permission–
I welcome the stories
that mar and rule their lives.
An eight-year-old knows
when it is time to hurry to the garage
(for privacy) so her military father
can be serviced.
I must bear witness to a stepfather
raping a daughter as the mother
forces liquor into her five-year-old mouth
with a stick at hand for any resistance.
Fifty years later, a blond little girl
in a 55-year-old body
no longer looks down from the ceiling
on the assault—
When she eventually is able
to allow herself to remember,
she dry-heaves and wretches for days
as she attempts to evict the demon semen
from her body.
I envy the earthworm
because it completes its life
without complaint and never
questions its place or purpose,
and never gives a shit
that its shit is gold.