Behind Closed Doors

2015 Barrett Winner

2nd Place Brittney Arafat

Death, I think I saw him once, when I spoke against your orders. Your fist, it hit my head And so I saw the twinkling of star, of heaven and of afterlife.

Happiness came to me in sleep and gave me lies, Her hollow words. But how could she have understood? She never felt your hands as they slap against my face, Around my neck, Across my back. “You're not good enough.” My anthem and Your song.

Love, I thought I knew him once, Envisioned him inside your eyes, But he was only an illusion, which you wiped quickly away. When I stood up to you, You knocked me off my feet, And laughed in mockery at my attempt, At my failed defenses.

But Hope, She's still strong by my side; A sturdy crutch, Secure and unyielding and yet As fragile dream, Against your words and violent fits She holds me up And so I’ll try another day Until freedom comes for me.