I grew up in rooms of dark corners,
my mother slept with a knife.
Breakfasts were sliced with uncertainty.
I was hauled to school on a bus.
At night there was silence
or blasts of TV. I searched
for the man in the dark, prayed
for my father to come back,
heard cutting beyond the glass
of my room with two views: the house
of my best friend – her frantic semaphore
and lights – and our well-kept blooms.