On February 8, 2009, at 12:30am, Chris Brown
beat Rihanna’s face into a landscape of craters
and bruises. This is the architecture of violence.
Later, Chris Brown described their relationship
as being similar to Romeo and Juliet’s.
In 2013, David O. Russell groped
his niece’s breasts and claimed
she had flirted with him first.
In 1965, Sean Connery told Playboy
there was nothing wrong with beating a woman.
That “bloody-minded,” “hysterical,” “bitch”
women should be hit, should be slapped.
In 2014, Julia Sonenshein wrote an article
titled “10 Violent Men Who Are Always Forgiven
Because Everyone Loves Their Art.”
They say it’s a myth that mother rabbits
abandon their young in their nests
after their young have been handled
by humans. That the scent of humans
will drive the mother away.
They say it’s a myth.
And that the young, no matter how battered
or bruised, will still be accepted
by their caregivers.
But in the human world, the rules change.
After the rape, most of my rapist’s friends
abandoned me. One claimed I only wanted
to profit off my art.
No one considered that blood
does not make good paint.
That trauma is an electric chair
that singes anyone it can reach.
It wasn’t my art, remember?
It was his.
And he was always forgiven
because they loved his art.