The Rape of Leah

C. 2001 Jackie Tice

She was a child; a child of God
The Catholic Church had named her one
She lost her father as a youth
Her mother took the next man’s roof

He took her to his bedroom lair
He slapped her face and cut her hair
And told her what she was to say
It was the Rape of Leah

The child cried to no avail
Her mother’s eyes were turned elsewhere
So silence left her in despair
And there she wept for years

Oh Leah, Leah, where art thou?
Named for the chaste sister of Rachel
When God said, “honour mums and dads”
What of the Rape of Leah

As Leah kept her fear inside
Survival claimed it rightful prize
Her spirit broke, she never spoke
Her body frozen cold

When she was old enough to think
Her solace came in forms of drink
She’d sneak the gin when cued by him
The memories burned her soul

Oh Leah, Leah, drowned alive
By tears too numerous to cry
Can someone save the child inside
Or will she never live

'Tis not a question for the faint
Or Leah’s heart, preserved by hate
But only by the child, embraced,
Can love expel the fear

Oh Leah, Leah, know the truth
You’re not those wretched, tangled roots
Inside your belly and your mind
Your wings have yet to fly

When Leah does put down the glass
She’ll take her place inside the dance
And give her life another chance
To wash the tears away

Oh Leah, Leah, child of God
The gift of Nature’s answered call
When all the stories have been told
They’ll know the Rape of Leah