I wish you had been there

like all the other daddies

to scare away the boys.

Instead you beat me

as the undesired child you said I was.


I wish you were there to help me with homework

when I needed you.

Instead you spat at me with words

words that are now tattooed in my heart.


I wish you had been there

to cheer me on at every game, 

every award ceremony

every school event

but instead you occupied your time

with other women


I don't know if you tried to hurt me

or if you really didn't know 

but although I carry your words with me

every single day

I will not let them break me.


I know I'm not stupid like you said I was

I know I am smart. 

I know I can grow up without a father figure

as I have been doing ever since you left


And now I wish you could see me

graduating with honors

going off to college

and you would actually see me 

for the first time

and I would say "Thank You"

because it took your nasty words

your punches 

your hate 

for me to realize that

I am 

and always will be




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