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Like the others, her thoughts are a graffiti
of spontaneous phrases & lines.

Four walls of clipped & looped words
left by hands in haste. One door, no

windows, the only light a hanging bare bulb.

I’m in hell
help me

Above this reads
One word in a hand
is worth more than
six behind sealed lips.

To fall asleep she beats her head
into the stripped mattress, ignoring

the stench of stale urine & bile.
The light stays on for the camera

mounted in the corner. When she pees

in the floor hole, changes her sweat-soaked
tee, gets off to fill the static silence,

they are watching. She tries to forget this

but her feelings fall like rain, overwhelm
like runoff water rushing past clogged

gutters, rage through restless nights,
settle at her feet in stagnant pools

with nowhere to go. She’s ready to write.

There is no hell
like this room in my head
no light enough
to lead the way out



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