Poetry, “The Smiling Shield”

     This coming friday will begin 2017’s “Last Fridays” poetry readings which will be available to watch on:

               Periscope Channel Live at 11:45 am (central) @PPPoetryProject2017 (*formerly @Cookies4Scopers)

               YouTube Channel for repeat viewing and additional videos


     “Last Fridays” will be an open mic style of reading of the previous poems posted each month on friday. These are not heart and flowers poetry. Some are NSFW (not safe for work) so if listening to them please use earbuds. These poems are written about the complexity of my inner life after it was changed by PTSD, Traumatic Brain Injury and life with Multiple Sclerosis since my diagnosis in 1992.

Today’s poem is titled “The Smiling Shield” 
I wake in the night covered in sweat
Memories fill my mind leaving me shaking
Fear consumes me
Fear overwhelms me
Thoughts, memories of pain filled moments
My body flinches in response
To long remembered hurts
Stinging pain striking again and again
Solid hurts which I thought would never end
My body flinches in response
To thoughts of laying in bed aching from bruises
Ones which would take days to show themselves
No, I’m okay, I’m fine, I’m doing alright
Smile so no one knows
Smile so no one will ever ask 
What is wrong?
Smile smile smile and smile some fucking more damnit!
No one must ever know
No one can ever know my shame
I lay in bed my body covered in sweat
I lay in bed and hold my pillow close
The only comfort there in these moments
As I settle down and those memories fade away
I awaken and remember
I am free now from that long ago pain
I am free now from all those hurt filled times
I am free to make my life what I want it to be
There is nothing which can or will stop me
From sharing these words
For all to hear
For all to know
That smile?
That smile you were so entertained by?
That smile you were so happy to see?
That smile?
It was my shield which hid away all my pain
Pain you still choose to believe had been a lie
Pain and hidden bruises all covered up
Made pretty by makeup and perfume
All the time pain of the deepest kind
Had been hidden away 
Behind the smiling shield




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