One more shower, just one more.
The water is hot. I need it to burn.

Trash is everywhere.
What is that smell?
What is he doing?
Oh God, no. No. No.
My brain keeps saying it,
but nothing will come out.
The memory is blurry.

Flash forward.
The water is hotter now.
Must wipe away the scents.
The smell of the garbage.
The smell of the dumpster.
The smell of the alley.
Must wash away him.
More soap. Need more soap.


Photo by Yana Mazurkevich

These sheets are tainted.
I cannot sleep in them. I won’t.

We are in bed, like very night.
I just want to go to sleep.
He keeps rubbing up behind me.
I say “no, I’m tired. I have a headache.”
He says, “come on baby, don’t you love me?”
He moves. no. No. NO. I said No.
“I love you,” he says.

Flash forward.
Tear the sheets off the bed.
Must wash them.
Throw away these panties.
Notice the comforter. Wash that too.
More detergent.
See the photos next to the bed.
Rip them apart.
Must rid this room of it.
Must rid myself of this dirty feeling.

But I love him.


Photo by Yana Mazurkevich

We are dirty. We are tainted. We had it coming.
We are unclean. We are whores. We were drunk.

Must clean ourselves. Must leave.
Must say goodbye.
It happened. So now what?

time to clean.

Rape is one of the most ignored topics because no one knows what to say. Know one knows what to feel. Victims feel blame because we have a rape culture that places blame on the victim. We have a rape culture that perpetuates the rapist’s good qualities and potential, rather than emphasizing the crime. As a victim myself, when I saw the one-word prompt ‘clean’ – I knew that I wanted to address this topic. There is a part of the victim that will never be clean again. There are rooms, places, towns, states that will never be clean again because of what happened there.

We must destroy rape culture by addressing it in bold, honest, brutal, revealing, and vulnerable ways. The rapist must no longer be perpetuated by his potential but brought down for his dirty crime. We must resist a leader who calls admission of sexual harassment ‘locker room talk.’

Speak. Be vulnerable. Resist.

This entry was posted in Feminism, Poetry and tagged , , , , , , , , . Bookmark the permalink.

8 Responses to Unclean.

  1. This is special. Why does it need a disclaimer though? No one should be prevented from, or afraid of reading it.


  2. Reblogged this on DukkeHus and commented:


  3. Katho28 says:

    Powerful poem with a powerful message. Thank you for writing this.


  4. Anaida says:

    Powerful, eloquent and thought provoking post. I must say that you’re a gifted wtiter.


  5. Love this piece… Its crazy how we have to stay sane regardless of our experiences. I guess strength wouldn’t amount to much if it didn’t come from a real place.


  6. torrigillblog says:

    I actually really appreciated the disclaimer. It was a trigger warning in its own way to me. Love this, though. Incredibly powerful, and too true for comfort.


  7. miss.normallyabnormal says:

    As if the thoughts found the perfect expression and the issue addressed with honest narration


Leave a Reply

Fill in your details below or click an icon to log in:

WordPress.com Logo

You are commenting using your WordPress.com account. Log Out /  Change )

Google photo

You are commenting using your Google account. Log Out /  Change )

Twitter picture

You are commenting using your Twitter account. Log Out /  Change )

Facebook photo

You are commenting using your Facebook account. Log Out /  Change )

Connecting to %s