There’s a squatter in my house.

An uninvited guest, who refuses to leave.

Immune to persuasion.
Unswayed by bribery.
Oblivious to my suffering.
Determined to stay.

He has the best seat in the house.
Swigging beer from a can,
Feet up, watching TV,
Whilst I cower in the attic.

It’s been 14 years,
And time hasn’t been kind.
The squatter’s grown fatter.
And fatter.
And just laughs when I speak.

Sometimes he snoozes.
And I risk tiptoeing past.
Afraid to wake him,
Afraid of his scathing anger,
All too aware of his hateful heart.

Because whenever I allow myself,
A sliver of confidence,
He snarls and bites and claws at my body,
Until I obediently slink back to the shadows.

There’s a squatter in my house.

His name is Pain.