In the Name of Love

Art: "I Alone" - Hope Mastroianni

by Kimberly Potter Kendrick

She closes her eyes

Denial deeply embedded

Young wife and mother

She’s strong; invincible

Those things won’t happen to her

She refuses to be her mother

In the name of love

A life-altering mistake

Enduring consequences she must

Not yet capable of forgiving herself

Standing proudly on his heritage

He’s reluctant to exonerate

No comprehension of the freedom

In the name of love

Penance unspoken

Demeaning labels

Activities interrogated

Vulgar remarks

Drunken violence

In the name of love

Broken glass; remnants of window panes

Pictures of their sacred day shred

Wails of the children

Daddy stop!


In the name of love

Bruises heal eventually

Bleeding emotions; incapable of coping

Trauma stuffed into her abyss;

a lifetime of pennies crammed into a jar

Not another penny will fit; forcing with all her vigor

As the jar bursts, coins diffuse everywhere

She weeps, gathering her life swiftly

Before anyone catches a glimpse

In the name of love

She’s strong; invincible

Those things won’t happen to her

He brought flowers, washed the dishes, ran a hot soothing bath

She quickly forgot they already did

In the name of love

A quiet family dinner

The children play on the floor with unexpected presents

On the television, a movie plays

Tonight it’s all cuddles and kisses

Tonight they’ll make love

Both pretend the tension nonexistent

In the name of love

She feeds the baby, puts the boy on the bus

Quickly, flawlessly applies unneeded makeup

She’s a natural beauty

One last glance in the mirror

She questions the truth

She questions herself

Too perfect, too sexy

Why are you wearing that?

Perhaps he will question

In the name of love

On her left finger she situates her wedding rings

Staring at the diamond; memory of choosing the perfect one together

Move onward, she’s eager

No silver band upon his finger

Obsessed with thoughts of doubt, mistrust, anger

Equally dominant; desires for his wife, his precious family

In the name of love

Life quiets

Filled with family days

Restaurants, beach days, a trip to a local carnival

Outwardly the picture-perfect family

Truth concealed

Largely his possessions reappear in the house

In the name of love

His struggle persists

Partial belongings reserved

Is it time or security he requires?

Wise not to pressure: she speculates the symbolism of the absent ring

Their future ambiguous

Will the marriage persevere?

In the name of love

She, also, has fleeting doubts

Wondering if another drunken rage might transpire

Praying never again will the boy shriek in terror

Praying never again will bruises be inflicted on her body

Uncertain and hopeful simultaneously; relying on her perpetual optimism

The house reverts to a home

Husband and wife

In the name of love

Kimberly Potter Kendrick graduated from Virginia Tech with Bachelor of Science degree and attended graduate school at Virginia Commonwealth University.  She recently relocated to Brandon, Florida with her teenage son. “My children and grandsons are my heart”. She is excited about life in the Tampa Bay area and continuing to express her creativity through writing and painting. She has been previously published in The Literary Yard.