I have a little friend,
who became a need for me.
He was, in hours of crisis,
my most faithful attendee.
When all my doors were shut at night,
and locks clicked into place,
he’d pry at one loose, squeaky shutter
and through it squeeze his face.
“Dear friend, I see this pain of yours,
it breaks my heart in two.
Dear child, unless you let me do my work,
this pain will devour you.”
At these words I raise the window
and open the shutters of my heart.
With a purr of triumph, my friend
jumps in and does his part.
First he pets me, coaxing gently.
A soothing song he sings.
Till slyly, with a wink my keys
he seizes, and a bell he rings.
“You poor idiot child,”
He begins to leer.
“There’s no hope of escape for you;
wallow in your fear.”
He draws a bath of salty tears,
and then pulls out a whip.
He tears my shirt off my back;
my hand he tries to grip.
A chase begins; he pursues me
round and round the room.
His voice rises; the bell grows louder,
the walls begin to loom.
Exhausted, I fall to the floor,
red ribbons on my back.
My attendant draws me to the bath –
all I see is black.
He promises me that all my pain
and guilt will disappear
if I punish myself for my transgressions
and give in to my fear.
All the wounds are infected,
and with deep shame I sting.
My friend guides me to a secret place
and gives me a sharp thing.
Then he seizes me,
a word of advice to lend:
“Dear girl, let me have my way.
Accept the kisses of a friend.”
I am not strong, I cannot hide
from shame, I couldn’t refuse.
My friend takes my hand and a blade.
By morning, I’ve been used.
Blearily, I remember
how good those kisses felt. Yet
when I look around my room,
my soul begins to melt.
My friend destroyed the cozy room.
The furniture’s overturned.
My childhood dolls, he ripped apart,
gouged out their eyes, and burned.
He took the gifts my parents gave
and flung them in the trash.
The delicate art of my developing heart,
has been shattered with a crash.
The pages of my Holy Book,
given me when I was young,
are ripped, torn – I cannot read them;
to the fire they’ve been flung.
Shadows fill that room all day.
Fearful someone will see,
I sit behind locked doors and cry
for the mess he made of me.
Knocking. My child?
I will not force my way in.
But know that I long to be with you
no matter the destruction or sin.
I open the door slow, unsure;
what condemnation will I face?
But this Man’s eyes are focused on me,
not the wreckage of the place.
Little one, it hurts me
that your heart’s in so much pain.
Your spirit’s aching from beatings
and showers of life’s rain.
Little one, listen to this Voice,
I’ll tell you something true.
But I won’t force you to believe;
believing’s up to you.
Yes, I know you made choices
you wouldn’t make again.
But another took the punishment,
the scars, the shame, the pain.
Look at my hands, my side.
Nails were what cut me.
Can you believe this sacrifice
was enough to set you free?
That there is no longer need
for whips, scars, and bleeding?
Child, don’t harm yourself any longer,
into the light I am leading.
With tears, I throw myself
into His open arms
and let His soothing presence
secure me from all harms.
Lord, I believe, I know
Your death has truly set me free.
But my friend is quite persistent,
he’s coming back for me.
With strength I have not,
my new friend does declare,
“Do not be afraid of this demon,
in you he has no share.
I’ll wait with you, through the night
till this scoundrel does appear.
Should he ever show his face,
I’ll show him the meaning of fear.
For child, he is but a wraith,
a vapor of spirit mist.
A wave of seeming strength,
but no true power over those he has kissed.”
So comforted, we draw up chairs.
My Shepherd lights a fire.
Holding hands, we wait for evening shadows
to fall, dark and dire.
Though uncertain, a peace is thru me running,
I am no longer on my own.
When next my little friend appears,
I will not be alone.