Bruises Heal

Names, cold shoulders,
Silence in the canteen;
Her words are scalpels.
Cutting self esteem.

“Stuck up little cow!
Thinks she’s really it!”
Laughter slices, she prescribes
A sharp, unfunny wit.

Ridiculed for standing out,
My marks are much too high
And so she drip-feeds saline hate,
injecting with a lie.

She’s bright, she’ll find
The weakest spot to pierce and prod and poke
She uses stealth, and poisoned words
And wears them like a cloak.

It seems I am her favourite game
And I’m the one who loses,
if she’d done this with her fists,
At least there would be bruises.

Copyright: from Poems with Attitude (Hodder, 2000), copyright © Andrew Fusek Peters and Polly Peters 2000, used by permission of the authors and the publisher

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Andrew Fusek Peters (b. 1965) and Polly Peters (b. 1965) have written and edited more than 45 books, in many genres including poetry, ...

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