by Mary Willette Hughes
Angry air surrounds him,
turns electric, sizzles.
Her splayed hands thrust out,
arc-spread, like the ribs
of a spider’s web, but his power
sweeps her down, his words
and fist invade her. She fades
into the old, familiar shadows
of shame, anger, silence, pain.
He gathers his weapons of anger,
slams out the kitchen door.
She rises slowly; she vows
to leave his cyclone rage,
to create a life alone. Fragile,
yet tensile as a web-thread, she
seeks her cell phone’s life line,
presses a memorized number
and waits, counting the rings.
She gathers silence, like flowers,
and begins to weave a new design.