This Is What Happens When A Child Raises Itself

a small child has taken camp
in my intestines

she clutches
to my innards
holding on for her
dear little life

my stomach twists
howls at me
begging for relief

but she is afraid
she will not let go

in the morning
I awaken, as I should
I suggest a shower
and dress, as I should
I advise eating
sometimes the little girl
is too afraid
squeezing so loudly
making digestion impossible
some days
I skip that part altogether

I drive
I work
I laugh
I smile

practice courtesy
compliment
understanding
patience

return back to shelter
out of the
distraction of
a
daily life

back to the voice of
a scared little child.

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18 thoughts on “This Is What Happens When A Child Raises Itself

  1. Lovely, Maggie. This in particular:
    I drive
    I work
    I laugh
    I smile

    practice courtesy
    compliment
    understanding
    patience

    So easy to relate, so well expressed. Thank you!

  2. You certainly expressed how someone would feel when scared inside. So many abused/neglected children grow up to do lots of good things, but inside pain does remain. Just hope the pain can one day at least lesson or heal altogether. Take care. Sincerely, Connie Webb

  3. Any poet with the strength of your voice long ago grew out of the little child’s voice in your stomach, but the voice of this poem, again, is strong and hits a note that can be universally recognized.

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