Hello Michael, It's me again. I saw your comment on Jessica's poem and had to come back as I knew you had changed the title and most definitely tweaked this little gem ALOT making it even more perfect than when I first read it.
1/ words are so very painful and most definitely can stick in your mind forever though any kind of abuse is horrendous. I love the imagery here though of words being twisted like a sack of angry snakes.
2/ At first, I wondered about this line but then re-reading it I realised it was very significant to the reader of the piece and that tiny hand was in the firing line of these words that are no doubt going to stick in the Childs mind forever. I do like how you paused with the "whilst..." as it gives us time to digest what you first said and also, time to slowly go into this stanza just like the child did.
3/ This I feel is rather significant as the hissing are the words (I think) and they are followed by strikes and bites which I feel are the physical sides of abuse though just my thoughts.
4/ I absolutely love this part though sad it speaks many volumes, the imagery of wind containing all the screams from this what I feel abuse and it's true because when it's happening nobody knows and it's like it's concealed within the walls of whatever room it happens in only to be 'gone with the wind.'
Again I feel this is really significant as it reveals that the abuser was a male.. Maybe I am completely off with thinking that this is what its about but it's like a shock revelation sort of thing.
5/ Eyes can say many things without words, they can show any kind of emotion and never lie (sorry first thing that came to mind) this is a very powerful write. Check the typo on "plaintive"
6/ I love the use of stoically here because it shows how emotionless this person is and again another shock revelation of a child being imprisoned which does as we know unfortunately happen and it makes my blood boil.
Yes, yes, yes. When one is abused that child is always going to be broken but they are usually the most nicest people you can meet.
Michael, this write has really opened my eyes and i truly hope it wasn't literal for you.
All the best,