Angel of Harlem

She pushed the nightmare away, shut her eyes tightly and buried her bruised face in the sweat-drenched pillow. Just a bad dream, she told herself. Only a nightmare.

But this nightmare was all too real.

When she thought about it, she guessed that perhaps he had wanted to be rid of her for some time. Perhaps her confrontation of his cheating had given him just the excuse he needed to send her away.

She could, by an effort of will, recall how it had been when they first began. His calmness and strength had drawn her. In moments alone, in his strong embrace, she felt like she finally found safety. Knowing that shelter exited for her had made her stronger and bolder. Even her parents saw a change in her, and told her they took pride in the woman she was becoming.

If only they’d known.

When had his strength stopped being a shelter and become a prison wall? When had it become, not the comfort of protection, but the threat of that strength turned against her? How could she have continued unaware of how things had changed, of how he was changing her?

She wasn’t that stupid, she admitted now. She’d known. But she’d stumbled on blindly, excusing his cruelty and slights, blaming the discord on herself, pretending that somehow, someday soon, things would go back to the way they once had been.

Had it ever really been that good? Or was it all a dream she had manufactured for herself?

She rolled over, pushing her tender, aching cheek into the dank pillow and closing her eyes. She would not think about him or how things had once been. She would not dwell on what their relationship had become. Right now, all that mattered was that she was, once again, safe.

Back in her childhood bedroom, she whispered forcefully into the stink of her own sweat and tears.

“I want a divorce”.

10 Replies to “Angel of Harlem”

  1. Great. Women have a problem of over loving. At times we need to look at a relationship from an observers perspective. That’s when e realise the truth that some men/ relationships we hang onto have been over for a while. And it is ok to walk away from a bad situation.

  2. the person I was three years ago is not the person I am now. I cannot promise you forever, I can only promise you right now – I was stupid to promise anything more than that…I want a divorce

  3. It’s like Paulo Coelho said ‘what happens once will never happen again. But what happens twice will surely
    happen a third time.’ You put up with abuse because makarairwa kuti gomera uripo. That sh*t will get you killed!

  4. to take the leap you need a fellow leap partner – all the good mem are taken, all the bad men have small houses – you cant win.

  5. @ anonymous, this would then be a good time to consider batting for the other team 🙂 But seriously, there are still good men out there no matter what the magazines would have us believe.

  6. Uhm … “all the good mem are taken, all the bad men have small houses” … and all women are whores, since we’re generalising, right?

  7. logical fallacy > fallacies of distraction > false dilemma:

    this shit is not mutually exclusive n shit. im both good and bad and neither, all at the same damn time. the same girl whores it up and can easily wife it up later.

    happy whoreing weekend n shit.

  8. joeblack – show me a single emotionally available man with limited baggage and I will show you a woman who is a whore!

    we live on generalisation – without it what would we be!

    Awesome – totally agree, a wife in public, whore in bed

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