Even After, a poem by Olivia Todd at Spillwords.com
Gleb Albovsky

Even After

Even After

written by: Olivia Todd

@StoryMinded97

 

Even after
you
undressed
her
with the assistance of your rifle.
Even after
you
threatened to shoot
her
if she didn’t comply.
Even after
his four comrades entered
and she thought she would become a corpse.
Even after
they intervened and lorded over
her home,
demanding
her husband’s belongings
as payment.

Even after
she
cleared away
pots of Viagra and discarded drugs.
Even after
she
poured
her soul into stemming
the bullet wounds in her husband’s chest
for forty-eight hours.
Even after
she
buried him
in their backyard
with the help of
her neighbour.
Even after
erecting a wooden cross
for this unmarked grave.
Even after
she yearns to ask Putin,
‘Why is this happening?
We’re not living in the Stone Age!’

Even after
they shot
her husband dead
and threatened to shoot her young son too
if she didn’t submit.
The two rapists were drunk
but sober enough
to burn her
home down
as they departed.

Even after
her
neighbour was
murdered
in an upstairs bedroom.
A message is written
in red lipstick
on a mirror, reflecting the carnage:
tortured by unknown people,
buried by Russian soldiers.
Another garden grave.
Later she was informed
by a separate unit
that her neighbour’s throat had been
slit
or
stabbed
and she’d been raped.

Even after
a group of girls and women were
raped
in a Bucha basement.
Nine out of twenty-five are now pregnant.
Even after
she witnessed
her sixteen-year-old sister
being violated in the
open
streets.
Some stoic lips remained sealed.

Even after
she is plagued
by nightmares
where
they
hunt
her
down.
Even after
the sedatives
do not work
to permit her slumber.
Even after
she trembles;
an eternal earthquake.

Even after
all this senseless
violence,
every
single
one
of these
girls
and
women
stand.

Olivia Todd

Olivia Todd

When I was a child, I fell in love with words at my little local library. From that point onward, I knew I wanted to create emotionally moving stories through the power of words alone. Reading and writing go hand-in-hand for me. Writing is a never-ending journey, and I am looking forward to improving my craft. I hope to share more stories/poetry in the future. To date, my short story Moon was joint winner in the MJ Meads Short Story Competition (2018), I have various poems published through the Young Poets Network, another poem The Mermaid of Feejee was published in The London Magazine (February/March 2021) and I have self-published a sci-fi dystopian novella called A Human's Touch (2021)
Olivia Todd

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