Listen to the Voices Not Yet Heard

America, it’s time to wake up.

There are still women who scream out their stories,

Only to be ignored

As if their vocal cords have been cut with the knives that are the words of men who say

“You better not say a word.”

And they don’t say a word, they shove their story down into the depths of their bodies,

Tucking those forbidden words between their organs.

Even if the memories can be pushed to the backs of their minds during the day,

They continue to creep back in when darkness cloaks the world.

When the darkness consumes them and their eyelids finally give up the fight to remain open, they relive it.

They relive the “no please don’t...”

The “Stop, you’re hurting me…”

The “Shut up, bitch!” followed by a sneer and a look from the depths of hell.

They relive the pressure, the roughness, of a man’s hand covering their mouth,

As their words of protest bang against the palm of his hand, begging to be heard.

America, you’re waking up.

But it’s time to listen to more than celebrity stories of sexual assault.

Every woman, every person who has experienced any level of this

Deserves to be heard.

America, it’s time to listen for a while;

To the voices that don’t live in the spotlight

To the voices not yet heard.