Divorce Anonymous (A poem/series of haikus about domestic violence and divorce)

As you may or may not know, domestic violence is on the rise all over the world. I am in the process of writing some poems about divorce and domestic violence. I want to write a whole book of divorce haikus, actually. I just completed this one poem – well, it’s a series of haikus – about a woman who was in a domestic violence situation. The poem is called, divorce anonymous. The title Divorce Anonymous just really has to do with women all over the world, anonymous women, who are in marriages filled with domestic violence. The haiku element is really that I tried to keep the 5, 7, 5 count but it lacks other elements of the haiku, such as the nature element….so technically, these are not haikus. But, let me know what, if anything, you think about this poem:

Divorce Anonymous

Slap, bang, punch, crying

screaming woman’s voice pierce the

night as neighbors sleep

Kick, punch hair pulling

words so cruel they draw blood

call 911 please

Baby awakens

confused by the commotion

he begins to wail

David Letterman

cracks jokes on the tv set

while husband attacks

Wife, mother, bleeding

whimpers on the bed afraid

to anger him more


morphs her husband dear

into a monster

finally he stops.

his body slumps over her

his weight pins her down

soon he is snoring

animal asleep is he

gun beside his bed

Will she leave this time?

Has he violated her

enough with his beer?

Her baby needs her

Her baby needs his father

What can she give him?

She can give him love

But his father provides well

his abuse is a small price

Silently, she stands

She tiptoes to her baby

and holds him tightly

“Mommy will save you”

she says to the sobbing child

we will leave this place

It was a mistake

the marriage was a mistake

It is time to leave.

Stealthily she moves

away from the drunken beast

into the moonlight.

For all the women in the world in a marriage filled with domestic violence, please know that you can get out. It is up to you to just do it. Seek help. Get a divorce. Escape in the middle of the night. Do whatever you need to do to save yourself and your children.

 Originally published December 15, 2010

Image:  http://www.flickr.com/photos/raggle/3341639075/sizes/m/in/photostream/