stripped

what is it about you that strips me raw
in places i’ve long forgotten?
those dark corners where my secrets lie hidden,
the disappointments, and the self-loathing?

why does it take just a word from you
for all of them to spill out?
and with them the tears i’ve long kept at bay,
all the shame and self-doubt?

what is it with your choice of words
spoken in a voice that always unravels me?
do you know of the places i speak of?
have you seen the things i can still see

the demons in their alcoves,
those moments of shame they whisper in my ear
of the times when i wasn’t brave enough,
when my constant companion was fear

is that why you know exactly what to say,
words that strip me of all the masks i wear?
is it because you know where i have been?
is it because you’re still there?