Outcry by Jessica Sita

Index Admin
By Index Admin April 14, 2014 12:38

Outcry by Jessica Sita


Outcry is a chapbook of about twenty-five poems which seek to explore the definition of the title through female voices. Some of the women inside are screaming to be heard, others are whispering, but all have something important to say. This collection explores the pains and triumphs of abuse, trauma, rape, mental illness, censorship and other such trials that women everywhere face.

According to the author, there are discussions of rape and abuse in a memoir-type setting.

The author has rated this book R (not suitable for those 17 and under).



Tie my tongue with silk ribbon, perhaps it will be pink—
a softer way to silence my outcry. I want to scream your name.
To lift the red hand from my thigh that matches your fingerprints.
Drown your face in my fading pain. Your voice it lingers in my ears.
But they’re all afraid, afraid for me to break my silence. The silence
that balances in my mouth like a sheet of thin glass. You are their
all-American, their bright-eyed, wonder child. I would ruin your delicate,
boyish life. So much potential. You’ve grown into a man while I hid in
corners from shadows. A wry grin and a laugh and I bleed onto the
bathroom floor. No fair. No more. Limbs light, I untie the ribbon,
the glass breaks and my tongue forms your name.

 Like Blood

Choking on memories like innocence, like the mobile above my crib,
can’t cut the chord. March, march, marching through my thoughts like so many little men. Little men with guns, pop, pop, POPPING.
Now cower from sound, from contact,
from that stranger with the elbow and my best girl friend with the fingertips, like fire on my skin. Burns, burns, burning. And the light
is too much. And that song….
that song brings me the night, the white ceiling and the bed
the smell of him and the touch, touch of callouses.
The time I was unmade. No, no, I said no. The memories drip out my pores. Red, warm, staining me like blood.

Poe’s Raven, black hair and olive skin,
low hanging dark lashes frame words
like mysterious, exotic, secretive,
like trouble.
Teeth straight and too white in the black-light
when she smiles, flashing canines.
Not alone, her best friend grins too,
playing at self-assurance,
pretending she doesn’t want to fold her arms
around her body, eclipsed by the Raven.
She’s pretty, pretty reckless. Percocet and Xanax
straight Vodka and gin on the rocks,
mix then repeat. Dance like she’s
making love to the music, drag someone home
male or female, high and drunk
naked limbs tangle, sweat-friction.
When she’s done, throws their clothes.
Out. Get out.
Cigarettes and coffee grinds at three AM.
Mascara smears. But her eyes are dry.

She models because of the disconnect
between mind and body, disassociate.
Hopes to reconnect her limbs behind the lens
like a marionette. Once, she poses nude
to regain power. This is her body.
They have laid claim time and time again.
Abused and misused. Assault and rape.
No man dare try again This time she has wings,
tattooed between her shoulders—an ouroboros,
a serpent devouring its own tail. Cyclic. Like a phoenix.
She burns, burns, burns out and reinvents herself.
Identity-study. Fluid as water flowing into bowls.
Is her self defined by the past, or does the past define her health?
She steps behind the camera to empower others.
Beauty found in all colors, in all sizes, in all joy, in all pain.
A lesson learned by few, but one she advocates.
Women need to learn the art of self-possession.
Of protest. Because, she says, our culture suffocates.

I loved her once.
I wasn’t sure.
Soulmates, though
she would shout
as the wind whipped
through twin brunettes
and identical grins.
Racing horses,
hooves beating
summer sun baked
ground. Up the hills,
she would always win.
I, holding my gelding back.
Always, I held everything back.
Soulmates she would murmur.
White scars on forearms,
she showed me where to wear
the pain. I displayed my burn marks
and she taught me how to cut.
Skin stories of the weary,
no longer innocent of heart.
Soulmates she would slur
as the disco ball slung lights
across her body, her hands
beckoning me to dance.
My hands cold around
the plastic cup—
cranberry and vodka and
pain killers. Ignored soon, she
was on the prowl.
Soulmates she said
on her wedding day.
Soulmates she would remind me
the first time we stopped talking.
Soulmates I whispered to silence
the second time she betrayed me.
I loved her once.

Copyright© Jessica Sita. All rights reserved.

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Index Admin
By Index Admin April 14, 2014 12:38
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