It is not okay to grab me in the narrow hall,
or press my back against the chipped vinyl
to shove your dripping tongue into my mouth.
Don’t mix talk of cheese, forgotten in the fridge,
with whispered insults, each veined with mould,
or sigh and hiss, insist it is your right or mine.
Yes, cloth covers but black and white cannot blot
out red – bruises blush pink on thinned wrists.
Serpents twist, convince with their forked-tongues
promising nothing but poison. I will suck it
from every inflicted wound, by-pass your face
to spit the venom on the waste ground, walk on.