Assault and despair

It wasn’t on purpose,

she saw that.

It was her fault

and she shouldn’t have said it, and now

Could her body go on taking

the bruising;

Her soul 

the battering,

And her heart

the fear?

He smiled his forgiveness

and said he wouldn’t do it

again and again and again,

But she really should have done

what he’d spoken, ‘DO


She walked to the shops

her head hung low

the pram ahead 

and for a while 

she almost felt 

she belonged.

Carol stopped 

and asked,





She mumbled something about falling

down the front steps

and said a hasty, goodbye.

He hated her talking to 

another.  She had bruises

to prove it.

She looked at the grocer’s window

and saw the picture of herself 

looking back at her

in amongst the fruit and veg

‘I am a fool twice over

but where can I go?’ 

she said to the child.

She shopped quickly and turned back home

soon she would be safe indoors 

and nothing would go wrong,

nothing would make him cross

today, ‘Oh please God, help me!’

She thought as she saw 

he was watching

from the window

that look on his face,

that leaflet in his fist.

She suddenly turned and ran

back up the street,

the pram wobbling and bobbing

and Carol

was there,

and they spoke


‘It is not your fault, 

it is not your fate

we can change this

we have a safe place

for you

and your child


he cannot go

and the police

will listen to you.’

She saw a black hole opening 

up in front of her.

He would find her

He would beat her

And no one but him really cared.

She wheeled the pram back

to what she knew,

the bruises on her arms and chest

burning and her heart 

knocking, knocking, knocking.

She’d face his temper,

but this time her screams

were heard

and she watched him

still threatening

handcuffed away.

He’d be back, he said.

Carol helped her pack

and drove her to 

the shelter,

a place 

where she could




learn to smile again

and her child too.

0808 801 0800  Wales helpline  0808 2000 247 national  

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margins are a great place sometimes because it is where change happens fastest but it is also a horrible place when we are stuck in them and grace is the moment when we can see that someone cares.

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