We Believe Survivors.
Only the survivors truly know what today feels like.
Whether their expended lineage has fatigued histories since the incipient rape of the first Indigenous woman, to the first woman kidnapped from Africa, bonded to history, kidnapped and shackled to the bottom of the slave ship.
The women on the U.S. military bases and the women the U.S. military bases have landed on.
Only the girl and woman who has tried to go to school, to work, for a walk, a jog, to the store, out to eat, or has nothing to eat.
Only the woman who went and didn’t go to the party.
Only the woman and girl who tries to go home unnoticed truly knows.
Only the woman and the girl who has no home to go to knows.
The elderly in the senior centers know.
Only the women in prisons.
Only the woman who tries to put him in prison.
The children going to Sunday school. The children who had Sunday school forced on them.
The children asked to stay behind after class.
The migrant women in the agricultural killing fields know.
The resettled refugees know.
The woman forced to walk up to the double parked car knows.
The sex worker knows.
Only the woman who can afford the right lawyer knows.
The woman who can’t afford a lawyer knows.
Only the woman who got the WRONG lawyer knows.
Only the women who crossed the desert.
Only the woman sent back across the desert.
The social worker, the counselor, the psychologist and psychiatrist know–KNOW.
Only the patients without access to socials workers, psychologists, psychiatrists, know.
Only their patients know.
The woman who tries to send money back across the desert knows.
The trans woman, keeping her head up straight, looking right ahead, looking through the adrenaline as she looks straight ahead, hoping the park doesn’t notice her noticing the park through her straight ahead peripheral under the dim street lights.
Only the gay boy knows.
Only the one stuffed into the closet knows.
The lesbian knows.
The asexual knows.
Only the survivors of the next ninety-eight seconds, when another woman is raped in the United States will know.
Only the dead women know.
If all of these only’s know and you aren’t an only, but you know…Because our entire government seemed not to know, men didn’t seem to know until now and–yet KNOW.
Then knowing makes us all guilty by association of knowing…