Her life was like a jail. She zippered shut her lips at teachers’ misunderstandings, playground bullies, her stepfather’s drunken rages. The written word kept her alive. Years later, her husband struck her down in front of their children. The children shrieked, hid in corners. She fought back, but lost. He was twice her size. She muttered incantations till the day he went to jail. When her oldest was caught smoking weed, the judge sentenced jail-time. When her dog ran away, it was locked up in the city pound. Even her dog did time.
One day, she had enough. She pressed her spirit forward till the walls crumbled at her feet. She arched her neck like Queen Nefertiti, embraced her children, spoke words of power. As the truth tumbled loose, poetry bloomed from her lips like daily prayer. The day she became a poet, her life began anew.