Elizabeth Jarrett.

At first it's all smiles and love,

Honeymoon is over now it's push ’n shove,

You stay because they say sorry,

It won't happen again please don't worry,

Then suddenly something triggers the tick,

BOOM slapped with your first backhand hit.

Left in shock you think how can this be?

Living in the denial of they do love me.

This time they beg please no divorce,

Saying "If you only listened I wouldn't use force"

Now the blame game sets in along with rules,

You hide the truth not to look the fool.

Then one day something's wrong with lunch,

Well hey lookout right hook punch,

You lay on the floor crying please no more,

But yet still you're scared to walk out that door.

They promise please don't call the cops,

I'll change this time it will stop.

So they're words you foolishly believe,

And again you stay ’n do not leave.

BUT then like a boiling spout,

They hit you so hard you're knocked out.

You awaken broken ’n bruised thinking where did I go wrong.

How can I survive? I can't go on.

This time it's over you have had enough.


[Elizabeth Jarrett is a Gumbaynggirr Dunghutti Bundjalung woman. She read her poem to an event in Redfern on February 12.]