I gasp through the blood-caked lips of the sins of my past,
I wince reliving the same nightmare dreamscape,
The nightmare haunts me – over and over, I relive the visions,
The visions of my past indiscretions, visions I cannot deny –
They are who I was, who I am, who I will become.

A gasp, night sweats, daydreaming,
The knife blade caresses my throat,
The weight on the small of my back makes me wince,
My head jerked back, fingernails dig into my scalp,
My hair Entwined amongst grating fingers.

The foulness of his breath permeates my senses,
Nightmare tears of my consciousness cascade down my face,
His breath bathes my skin…filling every pore,
The breathing becomes short and rapid,
My mind preoccupied with pulsating groans.

My jaws are locked open in a silent scream,
A call for help which is destined never to be answered,
The sweat of my shame permeates my soul,
The tears of my horror drench my face,
The sins of my past conceived and made flesh.

A procession of nightmares flood my tightly clenched eyes,
Acquaintances of my past occupy the room,
I inhale deeply melting into the chair,
The room spins and liquefies,
Visions of my friends melt from my consciousness.

My eyes strain to conjure the acquaintances of my past,
A nightmare gaze fills my senses with the scene,
A close friend, a needle impaling her vein,
I strain as she fades from my sight, my reality,
A slap of the face, tears well in my eyes.

I scream into a silent non-listening void,
Wake up, I cry panting for breath,
My tears soak her cheeks during a final embrace,
Her pulse slowly fades in my arms,
Stop please wait, don’t fade away.

The sins of my past weigh down on my soul,
Each day I fight through the memories,
The reality of my past makes up who I am,
I clench my eyes tightly shut,
A sigh, a breath – moments from my past.
~ Mark Bere Peterson (2011)

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