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Below are poems written by poet Charlotte Jade Puddifoot. Click the Next or Previous links below the poem to navigate between poems. Remember, Poetrysoup is an environment of encouragement and growth. Thank you.

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Rape

October: I'm eighteen, shortcutting home
through an autumn-burnished churchyard -
copper-lustred leaves, moss-skinned stone -
a jaunty swing of skater skirt and arm,
college folder square-sturdy in my hand.
In the moment. In the last pale pulse of sun.

"Hey, can you tell me...?"
I halt. I turn...

Cold earth. Colder blade dimpling my skin.
My coral cameo earrings scatter,
daisy-dotting the green.
My back is spiked by needles of yews.
Sun skews, sky side-slides
until his face is my firmament.
I'm staring into the tumid blank-bloat of blue;
the ground hardening beneath me,
the death-spike trees stiffening.

Heavy Special Brew breaths,
grubby, moist fingers
like grubs crawling over my breasts,
and, weirdly, I'm smelling pepper -
horror-spice of pungent lust,
its acrid nose-thrust -
and woodsmoke is drifting from somewhere...
lung-flame, tongue-flames
of searing words - his words -
blazing like the umber tumbling leaves.

"Please...Please...I'll..."
Fear-forced bargaining, but I'm beyond care.
And I'm aware
of the church steeple rising,
its phallus penetrating sky.
The tilting church could topple
as tears crystal-crush in my eyes.
Fear-faint, already half gone
in a silent scream, my muted mouth
mouths soundless goodbyes
to Sarah, to Mum.

Time slows to a crawl.
I try to call. Nobody comes
but the man who has me ground-pinned.
Bleachy stink of semen
whitening my ripped skater skirt,
but some things don't fade
and there is no clean in this, just dirt,
wet leaf-mulch, shame.
Ineradicable hurt.

Sacred soil is soiled, sullied.
Stunned, I stumble
shoeless, knickerless,
into the trees and heave
into the mud, into the leaves
strings of spittle-sick,
my thoughts strung out,
reality spun out.

From stinking, pulped leaves I retrieve
crushed coral earrings,
ground-grimy knickers,
my white court shoes
that whitely scream the 80s,
the scattered tatters of essays -
white, like fallen feathers, sunk in the sludge,
muddied, the red-inked words bloodied.
I gather them together.
Gather myself.
I go

forward into my future, stained from pain
and tainted touch, the smears of fear, self-disgust.
And oozing slime-soft into my ears
the mire of incongruous apology: I'm sorry
don't tell anyone -
I won't.

I don't.




4/16/2016

Copyright © Charlotte Jade Puddifoot

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  1. Date: 5/1/2016 4:09:00 AM

    I have read many poems related to this topic, Charlotte, but yours is one of the very best in content, expression and presentation. You had me there with you, feeling helpless at not being able to offer defense or relief. The ending is short, terse and meaningful. Hope this is fiction, but it sounds too real..... A fave. Regards // paul
  1. Date: 4/26/2016 5:06:00 AM

    Firstly, I certainly hope this is fiction, Charlotte. Secondly, this kind of thing does happen too often, when it shouldn't happen at all. Thirdly, the poem is brilliantly written conveying the feeling of helplessness, despair, ....so many emotions. A terrible subject, but one that needs to be brought to the fore. A7 and fave's. T.J
  1. Date: 4/25/2016 1:19:00 AM

    I hope this is not a personal note ....I was almost in tears after reading this...can't tell you why...The poem depicts the plight of so many unfortunate people....you have done a brilliant job my dearest...A fav and 7/7...hugs red
  1. Date: 4/23/2016 11:44:00 AM

    What can I say...This a very sad poem about the cruelty inflicted upon women by sadistic monsters. I am truly at a loss, my heart and prayers go out to you. :^( //James
  1. Date: 4/22/2016 6:20:00 PM

    Such a powerful poem on a heartbreaking subject. My heart goes out to anyone who has been a victim in the way you describe so vividly:-( hugs Jan xx
  1. Date: 4/22/2016 2:18:00 PM

    Charlotte, it takes a part of your soul and the vivid details and horror never fade. I hope writing this was cathartic if it this was not fictional. But nothing can remove the memories. My heart bleeds for you with empathy and understanding and I can relate. Blessings, my friend.
  1. Date: 4/22/2016 11:55:00 AM

    I know this may sound a bit fluffy (is this even the right word?), but really, I don't know if it even helps, but if I could, I really want to just give you a big hug right now. What I can't say properly in words, I'll just send through hugs. I do think you're such an amazing poet and person, Charlotte!
  1. Date: 4/22/2016 11:47:00 AM

    Wow, Charlotte--I sit here, frozen, beyond gripped with what I had just read--hoping, silently telling myself that maybe this was not based on true events. But my gut tells me it is. The horror felt real, so much so, I felt chills as I finished read this. And if it is, I pray for peace and healing. Running through my mind as well was the hope that the beast (that is even kind of me to call him that) got caught and that there was justice. But somehow, your last two lines tell me otherwise.contd
  1. Date: 4/22/2016 4:32:00 AM

    I couldn't stop reading this, so visual and emotive. A wonderfully written poem on an immensely difficult subject. Wishing you peace. Fiona
  1. Date: 4/22/2016 12:25:00 AM

    Charlotte. i sure do hope this is not a true story for YOU, but regardless, this is TOP NOTCH poetry. It truly captures the sight , taste, smell, feelings, all that must be involved with a rape. You are such a brilliant writer. that is why I wish I could see more p oems from you. Your use of alliteration too, all the various poetic devices you use to enhance a poem. STunning. And a fave.
  1. Date: 4/21/2016 6:50:00 PM

    Wow! Please tell me it's fictional. Actually ... don't say anything. It's hard to make comments on this kind of topics. However, I would say that I couldn't stop reading it, after the first lines, this poem didn't let me go. Captivating, shocking, thought-provoking ... alive. "I won't/ I don't" ... such potent and meaningful ending lines! If it's for Cyndi, it's a winner! Excellent job, Charlotte! It's a Fav!!

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