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‘REFLECTIONS’ ORIGINAL POETRY BY MARY DAVID

WHAT LOVE IS

To everyone who has sought to learn and unlearn the meaning of love.

Love is birthed

dressing up and showing the world ho

Plus, he was charming and smooth

when life

perfect your life is.

and for the first time

springs fort

Mama would smile

I felt beautiful.

Between a mother and her child.

She and Daddy’d hold hands. And they’d

Only I never got that “choice.

The first faces that welcomed me

Beam at me

If I ever did say no,

to this space we call

for playing the part.

Life

That’s how I learned what love is.

he would beat me so badly I barely survived.

I didn’t understand

He reminded me that I was worthless – but he chose me anywa

I don’t know what they said

when Daddy came into my room

and that was something,

But the kept me alive.

and told me to undress

it was everything, especially since I was

They were all I knew.

and to keep it a secret.

Nothing

That’s how I learned what love is.

I said I didn’t like it,

were my parents.

but he said I was his They taught me how to walk.

Favorite

How to spea

That’s how I learned what love is.

That’s how I learned what love is. If it weren’t for the day that he left me for dea

How to rea They taught me

Sometimes I felt dirt

I’d probably be dead.

Not to cry

Sometimes I felt confuse

But once he was gon

when daddy reached

But when I crie

I started to come back

for the bottle

Daddy said I was rotten

or when the neighbors

And I believed him.

The flashbacks are rea

called the cops

That’s how I learned what love is.

But so is my progress In my healing, I found

at Mama screamin so loud you were sure someone had died.

When Mama found out,

Forgivenes

That’s how I learned what love is.

I was relieved as much as I was scared.

for myself, and for my journe

Until she got jealous.

I found strength and I found hop

They taught me to ac

And called me a whore.

in who I am becoming.

Toug

That’s how I learned what love is.

I saw through all the pai My WORTH.

Forget those awful things! Sundays

That’s why I felt empowered

This is how

are for

when the guy I ran away with told m

I know

smiling at churc

Now, I would get money

what love is

laughing gladl

and a choice of yes or no

MARY DAVI Actress, Spoken Word Artist, Activist & Lawyer
 www.awarenessties.us/marydavid Mary is a storyteller and advocate for survivors of domestic violence, child abuse, and sexual trauma. Drawing from experiences of overcomers of trauma and her own journey from victim to survivor, Mary creates powerful narratives and highlights pivotal realities through television and lm, legal advocacy, and beyond. As a United Nations Advisor on Women and Children’s Issues, Mary defended the rights of domestic violence victims and disenfranchised populations before the United Nations General Assembly. She also handled nearly 2,000 criminal cases as a prosecutor in Baltimore City, including numerous cases of assault and sex crimes. When not creating art, Mary promotes the advancement of women and ending gender-based violence as Communications Director of UN Women’s Los Angeles chapter.

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15 AWARENOW / THE HEART EDITION

Profile for AwareNow

AwareNow: Issue 13: The Heart Edition