Khalin Vasquez is a Boriqua poet from Brooklyn, who was recently named the 2016-2017 Youth Poet Ambassador for New York City. In this performance for NYLON, she uses bold similes and catastrophic imagery to paint a vivid picture of a woman in the aftermath of abuse, who eventually finds strength through it all. "God is gone now," she says. "And I do not know if she was there the whole time to begin with, or if it was only my yearning to see myself near divinity."
Her work highlights the many terrifying signs of an emotionally, physically, and mentally abusive relationship. The horror of the abuse is emphasized by the way Vasquez effortlessly couples the pain of the experience with the weight of her words. "And he kisses my back with his feet, stomps across each vertebra as if I could connect all his broken, and I saw it coming," she continues. "How he made requests into law, decree, a rewriting of the Bible that I knew would only end in apocalypse."
"God and I will laugh. It will be the last time I let a man make a highway of me. And that part, I taught my own damn self."
Watch the powerful performance, above.