The Crash (Poem)

The Crash (Poem)

A Poem by Jacob Clifford

The glass leaves his grasp, shattering across the kitchen floor;

the wife freezes, teeth squeezing thin lips;

The young boy drops his jaw, bruised eyes darting to the door;

The husband sighs, pushes back his chair, his hands on hips.

 

With familiar motions, the man removes his belt.

The woman buries her face in scarred hands;

The boy's hands cover his face, hiding yesterday's welt;

The husband closes the distance, conjuring plans.

 

His belt whips forward, the crack like lightning.

The boy's cries ring out, piercing the night.

Crack! Crack! Crack! for eternity the blows keep heightening.

Waves of defeat roll off the boy, mingling with his fright.

© 2017 Jacob Clifford


Author's Note

Jacob Clifford
This is kind of a dark and unpleasant topic, I realize. Tell me what you think. Advice and thoughts are welcome, as always.

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AE
I like how this is a story, but it still has a rhyming scheme. It's interesting how in the first stanza, you know the kid slipped up, broke the glass, oops. Then in the second stanza, you start to get cautious and worried and you can feel the fear start to creep up on you. Then it sucked (not the poem, because I really like the poem). I didn't expect for it to be like that. I actually winced because I've felt the crack of a belt before and the immediate fear when you see it, then that lingering feeling afterword when you walk off feeling defeated.

Posted 6 Years Ago


2 of 2 people found this review constructive.

Jacob Clifford

6 Years Ago

Thank you so much! That's exactly what I was going for: that creeping fear. That's a good point you .. read more


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Reviews

It was really interesting, a good story. Creepy topic, but thats what this contest is. Sad to think that stuff like this happens in real life. Great description though, not too detailed, just the right amount....

Posted 6 Years Ago


1 of 1 people found this review constructive.

Jacob Clifford

6 Years Ago

Thank you very much, LP. I'm glad you enjoyed it.
i think some people should not be parents and should not have significant others upon whom to
elicit pain just to make themselves feel worthy----this kind of abuse comes from deep within a vacant well.

strong piece...made me angry reading it... i think this kind of abuse is worse than murder.

Posted 6 Years Ago


1 of 1 people found this review constructive.

Jacob Clifford

6 Years Ago

I very much agree with you. Some people need to work on themselves before bringing other people into.. read more
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Gee
A difficult subject, few tackle, you have and made quite a good fist of it.Thought the rhyming was a little off, but perhaps meant ?

Posted 6 Years Ago


1 of 1 people found this review constructive.

Gee

6 Years Ago

Hi, I as many others often syllable count to give an even flow, that's not to say that's right or an.. read more
Jacob Clifford

6 Years Ago

Ah, I forgot about syllables. I don't bother with syllable counting (I'm too lazy) but more power to.. read more
Gee

6 Years Ago

My pleasure
Well done Clifford.
You have done a great job here. I really liked the rhythm of the poem and how it represented emotion of different characters. To pack too many details in these stanzas is a very difficult task but you have done it quite beautifully.


Posted 6 Years Ago


1 of 1 people found this review constructive.

Jacob Clifford

6 Years Ago

Thanks again, Usman. I appreciate your praise.
As a child of abuse, I can say that you've nailed this one with the perfect balance between the horror of violence against loved ones, yet without being melodramatic, maybe even slightly methodical instead, such are those moments of bracing for the worst. This is the poster child for "SHOW don't tell" -- the first rule of good writing. So many original descriptions to let us know how these people are feeling without ever telling us about it one bit. Great realistic depiction. It happens often, so it's not dark & gross (as stated in your author's note) like there's something wrong with writing about it truthfully.

Posted 6 Years Ago


1 of 1 people found this review constructive.

Jacob Clifford

6 Years Ago

Thank you very much. I strive to be truthful and unbiased in how I write.
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BL
You've got a lot of action detail in with a few short lines and you have told the story within the poem well. It's good to have poems about different subjects like this.

Posted 6 Years Ago


1 of 1 people found this review constructive.

Jacob Clifford

6 Years Ago

Thank you, Be.
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L_
Written lovely, the rhymes act as a blanket covering the reality of the piece to present it in a fairytale-esque fashion until you read on.
Good work.

Posted 6 Years Ago


1 of 1 people found this review constructive.

Jacob Clifford

6 Years Ago

Thank you, Lyra. I'm glad you enjoyed it.
Oh, how sad and scary-
you brought us there though.

Posted 6 Years Ago


Jacob Clifford

6 Years Ago

Thank you for reading.
What's frightening is how relatively normal this was when I was growing up. You've captured it really well. What's slightly confusing is the second stanza where the boy hides a welt on his face, so he obviously already got a backhand, but father is still closing the gap. Apart from that, this is a wicked poem about child abuse, and I mean it as a compliment.

Posted 6 Years Ago


1 of 1 people found this review constructive.

Jacob Clifford

6 Years Ago

Thank you, Roland. The kid's welt is from a past abuse session. He hide as a way of hiding from his .. read more
Roland Petrov

6 Years Ago

Makes sense, but not sure the reader will figure this out. How about "hiding yesterday's welt", or s.. read more
Jacob Clifford

6 Years Ago

That's a very good suggestion, Roland--thank you. I would like to say I'll make the correction, but .. read more
It Tells a horrible story, but one a lot of us can relate to. As I read this I could picture my dad coming at me. It seems like it was the little offenses that drew thew worst punishments. Of course, maybe that's why I never got into big trouble. Its a touchy subject to write about, but one that needs more attention.

Because I write in rhythmic patterns it's hard for me not to try to read in one. But, I think this is a story that needs to be written just as it was, with a serious tone.

Thanks.

Posted 6 Years Ago


Jacob Clifford

6 Years Ago

Very accurate points you've made in this review. Thank you very much for reading.

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35 Reviews
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Added on February 24, 2016
Last Updated on June 6, 2017
Tags: Child Abuse, belting, violence

Author

Jacob Clifford
Jacob Clifford

MN



About
Thank you, my Cafe family, for all that you have done for me. This has been a wonderful period of my life. If any of you ever want to reach me, feel free to send me an email at [email protected] more..

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