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#56280 - 07/30/01 08:57 PM Cleaning Out the Attic
Stephen_5 Offline
BoD Emeritus
MaleSurvivor
Registered: 09/12/00
Posts: 667
Loc: Northern California Foothills
This is a poem that I wrote and read at Mike Lew's Kirkridge retreat for male survivors a week or so ago. It means a lot to me.

Cleaning Out the Attic

I was cleaning out the attic
of forty years of junk
When I came across old papers
and some old clothes in a trunk
There were bills marked paid and scraps
from so many years ago
And precious memorabilia
from where I did not know

I came across an old green shirt
with patches on sleeves and chest
From troop one forty four when I was twelve
and passed my first class test
The shirt brought back angry memories
of innocence abused
Of debasement, humiliation
remembrance of being used

It made me feel so angry
I wanted to yell and shout
Then I looked again and saw
it was from such a little scout
The shoulders were no wider than
a foot or so at most
He was a helpless little boy
his innocence then a ghost

He was young and not so big
as I remembered him to be
How could I think, either now or then,
that he could wrestle free
I'm older now and wiser
but still a little boy
Who wants to love and be loved back
with happiness and joy.

This happened to me over the 4th of July week. I was depressed and angry until I was at Mike Lew's Kirkridge retreat this year and wrote it all out. I can finally say it and feel it, "It wasn't my fault!"

All the best to all of you and especially to my Kirkridge Brothers. Don't just survive, thrive! Success is the best revenge.

Steve from Chico

[ 07-30-2001: Message edited by: Stephen_5 ]

_________________________
I want to stay as close to the edge as I can without going over. Out on the edge you see all kinds of things you can't see from the center.
Kurt Vonnegut (1922-2007)

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#56281 - 07/31/01 08:15 AM Re: Cleaning Out the Attic
michael Joseph Offline
Member
MaleSurvivor

Registered: 03/11/01
Posts: 2719
Loc: Virginia
Thank you for posting the poem Steve!

_________________________
Standing together is so much better than hiding in the dark.
***I am a three time WoR Retreat Alumni***
The Round Table, Men's CSA Group, Monday 7:30pm CST, MaleSurvivor Chat

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#56282 - 07/31/01 08:24 AM Re: Cleaning Out the Attic
bosishere Offline
Member
MaleSurvivor

Registered: 02/14/01
Posts: 161
Loc: nashville,tn,usa
Steve, when I read your poem this morning, 31 July,it brought tears to my eyes. We were all little boys once, and to have undergone what we did is, for me, so frightening, and sad that we DID LOOSE SO MUCH. Thank you VERY MUCH FOR YOUR POST. Michael aka bosishere


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#56283 - 08/02/01 01:22 AM Re: Cleaning Out the Attic
Brian B14 Offline
Member
MaleSurvivor

Registered: 05/04/01
Posts: 122
Loc: New York
Steve,

Your poem is awesome! Thank you for posting it!

God Bless You,

Brian

[ 08-02-2001: Message edited by: Brian B14 ]


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#56284 - 08/02/01 03:35 PM Re: Cleaning Out the Attic
getteddie Offline
Member

Registered: 07/19/01
Posts: 226
Loc: Cub Hill, Md
Steve,
I have just read your poem and I did something to me. Forty years ago and 12 years old, Wow that's me. You have nailed down what my wife and all my Pdocs keep telling me...it's not my fault! I do understand this but can't feel it yet. I want that little boy to kill someone to stop it but like you say in your poem...he is so little...too small to fight all of them. I keep the feeling that he should had done something...but you are so right...when I look at the size of my 12YO's cloths..I can see what you mean and I feel...for the first time..that I was so little, so small and helpless. The cloths size thing did it for me...thanks Steve for your poem. How could anyone blame a small 12YO child for being raped...my father did...maybe I don't have to any more.

Eddie


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#56285 - 08/02/01 07:26 PM Re: Cleaning Out the Attic
Stephen_5 Offline
BoD Emeritus
MaleSurvivor
Registered: 09/12/00
Posts: 667
Loc: Northern California Foothills
Thanks to all of you. I have been told numerous times that it wasn't my fault, but I never really believed it before. The guilt, shame and humiliation when I was so young just made me think that it had to be me, it couldn't be someone I trusted. I feel a lot different now, finally. That damn shirt really sent the message home to me. I think I'll keep it, just as a reminder that I was a little boy.

I'm very happy that others could relate. I hope it helps someone else too.

Take good care of yourselves,

Steve

_________________________
I want to stay as close to the edge as I can without going over. Out on the edge you see all kinds of things you can't see from the center.
Kurt Vonnegut (1922-2007)

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#56286 - 08/08/01 01:16 AM Re: Cleaning Out the Attic
Anonymous
Unregistered


YOU KNOW THAT REALLY IS A GREAT POEM. THINK YOU PRETTY MUCH NAILED HOW ALOT OF US FEEL


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#56287 - 08/17/01 10:36 PM Re: Cleaning Out the Attic
Stephen_5 Offline
BoD Emeritus
MaleSurvivor
Registered: 09/12/00
Posts: 667
Loc: Northern California Foothills
Hi to all of you.

I just wanted to post a short update. Things are going along fairly well. I'm just finishing up a course learning to be a peer support facilitator and I am going to try to start a peer support group for adult male survivors locally by the end of next month. I think it's about time for me to help other guys that are going through some of the stuff that I went through. I think just being able to talk to someone who has "been there and gets it" is useful. I'm still working on a lot of things but I'm feeling a lot better about myself these days.

Take good care of yourselves, we all deserve the best that life has to give.

Steve`

_________________________
I want to stay as close to the edge as I can without going over. Out on the edge you see all kinds of things you can't see from the center.
Kurt Vonnegut (1922-2007)

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