she walks into the sea to cleanse herself from the hurt that flooded her when he called her a whore with handfuls of brine she douses his vernacular, vile and full of harm, erases it from her mind barters the words for the soft-spoken sweetness he used to ensnare her heart and soul she’s not here to clear his conscience she’s not here to lift his guilt let him face the love he crushed with his thoughtless thirst she scours her body with sand and stone struggles to escape the hissing voice that tells her to let his words rip her to shreds and drown in the force of a surf that will steal her life