The boy that took pictures of me being raped
died a year ago
when he drove his truck into a pond.
He managed to get out of the car but the area was boggy;
he drowned in four feet of water.
So often one has to tone down the truth
in order to be believed.
The truth is, I was always scared of men.
What destroyed me that night
had been destroying me all along.
Now perhaps you understand
why I never told you about this. I liked what you saw
when you looked at me.
I liked telling you stories about the women I’d been with,
I liked turning you on.
I told you all kinds of things. When you left,
I did not eat for a month.
I could not brush my teeth
without throwing up.
Here’s the dream I never told—
I wake alone in the grass. I laugh
because I am terrified. It is you
who finds me, puts the towel around me tenderly,
carries me inside.
Catherine Pond is a poet from Alpharetta, Georgia. She currently lives in Brooklyn and teaches at the Fashion Institute of Technology. She is Assistant Director of the New York State Summer Writers Institute and co-editor of Two Peach. Her manuscript, Fieldglass, was a finalist for the Kathryn A. Morton First Book Prize in 2015 (Sarabande Books, Judge: Mary Ruefle).