I don’t need you to harden me
to the realities of this world.

You think your arbitrary rudeness
and withholding of love or respect
teaches me?

You peck and pry at me
ignore my pleas for
and think our shared blood
covers all methods
for your sins

Don’t stab me
only to muffle my scream
tsk at my tears
smother my pain
for my own good

There is melody in your meanness
that I know.
There are lessons to be taught
in gentle application
of wounds

But you are not it
not my tormentor
not my teacher
not my enemy