PTSD Survivor Poetry: ‘Doll Face’ + ‘For My World’

In our ongoing celebration of National Poetry Month, this week’s PTSD poem comes from Denita Stevens. Last year Denita shared ‘Bright Light‘ with us. This year she’s back with two more powerful pieces.


Plastic parts

Absent mind
Beatless heart
Rubber skin

Can’t absorb
The emotions


Of longing

To be a normal girl
In a world
Where people


For My World

Don’t weep at my feet
For the cross I bear.
It’s not your fault
I’ve been chosen
To walk the streets
With a cross on my back
And thorns on my head.
People mock me,
But I hold my head high.
This blood I bleed
And tears I cry

Are for joy
That you
Won’t have to suffer
Such as I.
There are holes in my hands
And holes in my feet.
In days they’ll heal
And so will your grief.
My death is for you,
So that you may have peace.
I prayed and prayed

To let this burden pass,
But if it did,
You would continue
To sacrifice.
I can’t go on
I could stop all of this
As my body goes limp
I whisper, “I love you,”
And blow you
My last kiss.


For “Bright Light”, Denita was awarded the 2000 Academy of American Poets Prize at Baylor University & was recognized as the 2000 First Place Winner of the The Virginia B. Beall Poetry Prize.Denita Stevens, 35, is rape survivor, volunteer firefighter, a member of the Lake Whitney Rescue Association and of the Waco P.D.’s Citizen Police Academy Alumni Association, a former CASA (Court-Appointed Special Advocate) for foster children, who writes in her spare time.She is a 2003 graduate of Baylor University majoring in Journalism, with a minor in Business Administration. While a student at Baylor, she was the winner of the 2000 Academy of American Poets Prize & the 2000 Virginia S. Beall Poetry Prize for a villanelle she wrote titled, “Bright Light” & wrote a feature story about depression, “Feeling Blue” which appeared in the Spring 1998 edition of “Focus: the Baylor Magazine.” She was also a Sports Reporter for the “Baylor Lariat” & has worked in the Sports Dept at the “Waco-Tribune Herald.” She also spent a summer abroad studying at the Universidad de Salamanca in Spain.


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