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Or are they one and the same? Am I a pack rat because I’m a slob or am I just a sentimental saver? Anyway, I was cleaning out my closet today and came across a box of memorabilia of many different years. That’s one of my problems—I pack different things from different times all together because I’m usually in a hurry to get things done at the last minute. Like today.


So, I came across photos of my kids when they were little, my friend (of almost twenty years) who’s having surgery tomorrow, old report cards, Mother’s Day cards, jewelry, cards from my ex-husband telling me how he was going to love me forever (I ripped them up and threw them out), old Christmas greetings from far away friends, and some of my writing from long ago. I found a book in which I’d had a poem published. I’d thought I lost that long ago. And another poem from another time. One I wrote over a decade ago, but when reading it remembered the circumstances all too clearly. I didn’t know what else to do with it, so I decided to share it here.


His voice was like honey, my seducer,

not just the sound but what he said.

To him I was beautiful, wonderful, lovely.

The words floated like feathers around my head.


There was strength and warmth and sweetness

in the voice of my seducer. And in the words

I found affirmation, reassurance and love.

These things I needed to heal years of hurt.


In his voice, I felt passion; I felt fire.

Things I thought I could never feel again.

His words, his voice made me weak and dizzy;

they made me feel like kids do after they spin.


Twirling

Floating,

Flying

Too fast

Out of control

Falling

Crashing


His voice was like honey, my seducer,

sweet, sticky, suffocating me.

Not just the sound, but what he said.

You’re mine—I will not let you free.


There was anger and fear and obsession

in the voice of my seducer. And in the words

I found threats, emptiness, and hate.

This was not the same voice that I’d heard.


From his voice, I got a cold, icy shiver

that ran down my spine and made my stomach knot.

His words, his voice made my head spin, my heart pound,

made me break out in a sweat even though I wasn’t hot.


His voice was like honey, my seducer,

but I am too strong to get trapped by his words.

I faced him. I told him. “It’s over—I’m gone.

I will not be your sweet prisoner. I will be free.”


After reading that, I lapsed into thought; cleaning nothing more. I have the rest of the closet to do, but it’s time to sit and remember … times and feelings of the past—hurts, loves, anger, pain, fear, love, and happiness. There’s always tomorrow to clean again.

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