Regrets

When love,
open-eyed
and uplifting
appeared

she shuddered,
withdrew,
Shame’s shadow
casting putrid
projections

fear and uncertainty
cloaked her, masked
desire as repulsion –
wore her tragedy
as identity – could not

make the leap –
would choose, instead,
a legacy of abuse –
reaffirming the guilt
and self-loathing

Never could forget
the time that love
showed up –
opened-eyed
and uplifting.

(VJ’s weekly Challenge is shadows)

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