you show me your bruises
like a family cat leaving mangled mice
on the Welcome doormat

i do not like the black green and purple
splotching your white skin
although i know them to be innocent

and then i am drawn to kneel at your feet
you bare legged and knees apart
to touch and kiss the bruises of your thighs

these gestures offered at the alter of you
hoping my inadequate lips and hands can mollify
your invisible and unspoken batterings

—P.L. Thomas