Lost Childhood

Etchings of a childhood painted dark and streaked with pain
Forever in his memories have imbedded a life-long stain
Staring at the closet where imprisoned he had cried
Scratches from his fingernails still imprinted deep inside
Patches still visible on walls he’d been pushed through
As trying to protect his sister, dad’s punches he’d take in lieu
Salty stains upon the floor where once had been his bed
From many frightened, sleepless nights and fearful tears he shed
Blood stains in the bathroom were not visible by day
Seemed to glow in shadows when the light was held at bay
Sounds of muffled pleading, his mother bleeding, crouched in fear
As she took his violent beatings, to this day assaults his ears
The sound of his little sister crying, hidden beneath her bed
So frightened that he’d hear her sobs and turn on her instead
The sounds of screams and sobbing still echo through the halls
Forever trapped inside this house where no one heard their calls
This house now stands empty but the stench of fear’s still strong
The phantoms of their terror long held captive here belong
The bruising and the beatings now a part of his distant past
But etched inside his mind and soul the memories forever last
He made a vow to God and man that day he left this place

Never a violent word or thought would he let his soul embrace
And to this promise he kept true and has guarded with his life
Witnessed by his four-year old who has never known such strife
He turns around and walks away, memory bruised again by pain
Once he safely leaves this house, glances back with great disdain
Then taking his son’s hand in his own he looks at him with love
Says from those depths of suffering you will always be held above
He knows he will never return as he drives toward their future
With silent promise to his son that with love will he be nurtured