just words

beat to a pulp
not the long, slow erosion
but spontaneous, relentless, brutal pummeling
one word after another
they land them like punches, see,
felt in the gut
before the head or the heart even knows what happened

but oh it happened alright
every
single
time

and when you finally figure out you’re broken
more words come at you
just to make sure you understand
it’s all your fault
but hey you must be crazy
everybody knows that anyway

who wins?
who wins?

what makes it impossible
to deliver words with wings
to speak like a smoothing hand
or an open palm cupped to hold
to utter like an embrace?
what prohibits kindness 
even in anger or tension
what makes that an obscenity?
what compels the use of a word
as a numbing blow?
they will tell you
you asked for it
you deserved it
you
had 
it 
coming

when you break again
and again
can healing still come?
look at the power of a syllable:
knife club gun
kiss.
put two syllables together
and speak the truth:
I am.