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Terry Collett


Shlomit Remembers.


Shlomit remembers
the slaps at the back

of the legs by Mother’s
wet hand. Sins must

be punished, Father said,
lounging in the armchair

by the fire. She had
asked for more pudding,

milky, white, warm to
fill her small stomach,

the stinging hot flesh,
Mother’s hand striking

slaps one, two and three.
Straight to bed, none of

the stories, no supper,
no tea. She recalls that

dark room, the cold bed,
the smell of nightclothes

over worn, infrequently
washed, the aching head.

She remembers that more
than once, always that

hand wet, flesh exposed,
the slaps thrice, painfully

given, not nice. She recalls
the hand marks left behind,

red on white, carves or
thighs, the stinging sensation,

the shame of it all and them
arguing down the darken hall.

Submitted: Wednesday, July 24, 2013
Edited: Thursday, July 25, 2013

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