Burn iris embers
Black smoke breathing musician
Make her sing a song

Audience awaits
Exhausted-squeezed-empty-Thing
Time to play, she knows

Beaten drum woman
Struck drum woman, wails a song;
Her soul escaping

Drum Beaten woman
The screaming struck instrument
She’s no legs to flee

Eager, naive skin
Dreamt warm, a snared promise-
All sweet, honeyed lies

Soon gentle hands-Snap
(Unprotected, unprepared)
Dealt a striking blow

He’s tuning her head-
Twisting her rods, drawing sound
Dampening her spirit

Check, attack, backbeat
Balanced empty resonance
Lonely, hollowed thing


 

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Stephanie Deal grew up in Los Angeles during the 1980s. "My father was full blooded Native-American: Tohono O'odham, and I have never laid eyes upon him. My mother is a gentle woman who never deserved to be treated as the world saw fit. I learned to read for the first time when I was ten years old; I took to it like a fish to water. Books are one of my greatest joys, followed only by my husband and my children. I have made many mistakes in my life, and for it I have suffered. But I have survived and persevered, and am better for that suffering. I write about a number of topics, but closest to my heart is the topic of surviving domestic violence." Stephanie is currently attending college to become a teacher. This is her first publication.