Sovereignty

My thoughts are like arrows to my soft places, 
turning them hard with scars, 
until I can no longer feel the piercing pain;
Until I am but a shield to guard the realms 
from the darkness I create.

I learned to make it when I was young
from the ones who stole my heart
and fed it to their hounds 
to keep themselves safe in the night; 
to have their way with the rest of me.

But the hounds brought my heart back
when their masters weren’t looking, 
so I could feel everything.

I should be thankful for strong pain 
that makes all things quiet but itself.  
For when it does, there is nothing else, 
not even the rulers who gave it to me.

There is a strange peace in simplicity, 
even when it hurts like hell. 
And the hounds like it better with me now, 
so the raiders have to think twice
before they come too close.

© 2022, Sheya Forest

Art: Cerberus [Hound of Hades], Watercolor by William Blake.

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