Cherry Red

Content Warning: sexual assault

As a little girl 

I stood upon tiptoes 

while picking cherry tomatoes 

from my grandfather’s garden. 

As a woman 

I stand on tiptoes 

waltzing around words 

spilling from his mouth. 

Cherry red 

lips pressed against mine 

without the thought 

of how I would feel 

because I did not plead 

the case of consent. 

Calloused palms 

grasp my hair in waves 

of regret as his eyes 

mirror bodies frozen in time. 

Cherry red 

tears spill from my eyes 

for those who did not 

have the strength to speak up, 

so I yell until my lungs burn 

and the lost souls form 

sinking holes within the bottom 

of my acidic stomach. 

The collapsed 

hearts below the surface 

beat to be released from 

the abyss of shame 

even if their words 

did not travel up the vines 

of thorn filled roses.

As a little girl 

I stood upon tiptoes 

while picking cherry tomatoes and I imagine what life 

would be like if I stayed 

within the garden.

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Amara Phillips
Amara Phillips is a 21 year old English major who has a passion for poetry, prose, and British literature. She is currently working on publishing her first chapbook, and when she is not writing poetry she is writing short stories on Medium. When she does not have pen and paper she is oftentimes thrifting or attempting to spread awareness on pollution.