You Knew I Wouldn’t Say
I could have been older, or perhaps much younger. I occupied that timeless phase of fifteen to twenty, smooth face and small lips. I think you liked that. The thrill of borderline illegality.
You called me Lolita as you wrapped my hair around your forefingers and pressed me into the field, half aware that my laughter hid my fear. I remember the monstrous size of each hand, the way you bent over my body, predator, ready to gnaw at my flesh. You bite my neck with such force that I wonder if I will die here, by the gate on the burning earth. I couldn’t run, even if politeness had let me.
Your palms pinned my wrists as I pulled away, staring down, down down as I pleaded for patience. The straw is burnt with summer and is sharp on my neck, my mouth dry at your cologne. I never wore that dress again. I never told anyone. Is that what you knew, or wanted? You whispered in my ear when you were done, not so much a command as a reassurance of my sinning.
What would people say if they knew, darling
I had stumbled over the miles home, grazed and bleeding, dazed with the raw heat and rough hands. It was late August and my school shoes cut red blood from my heels that rendered me barefoot. I listened numb to the crickets in the hedges and followed the the river down the hill to the village.
It was three hours walk. A pilgrimage on lost innocence. The river flows on, the blackbird whistles, the tarmac is still hot and wet beneath my feet. Perhaps I had imagined it, if not for the ripe bruises on my neck and choking pain in my lungs where your hands had pressed around my throat. Later in the bath I would find your fingertips bruising into my thigh, marking me with the memory of what you had done.
Had you meant to kill me? Your grip was so violent, sadistic, hard around my neck with an anger that seemed to thrill you. Only when I had felt the white hotness of death had you let go, kissing my forehead as if I was not gasping under your palm. Was this just some fetish, life and death over little girls you were given over to teach?
I grew up. I grew out of my school shoes and into late nights and long books. I grew away, to grey cities and underground stations, dinner parties and cybernetics. But you are there, where you killed me, in that field
Where a little girl is buried in a red dress with white socks, still believing in love and trust and men, and all her innocence, all her peaceful nights, all her joy
And I will walk past, and I will remember her, and you
But is that what you wanted