Fault lines

He moved close, he pulled me tightly to him.
He wanted me to know I had done a good job.
And then he wanted to know, could he kiss me for it?

He was not holding a weapon.
He asked for permission.
We were standing in the office hallway.

Another man asked to accompany me back to the hotel after work.
It was late, a foreign city, so I agreed.
He demanded a kiss – “it’s what the Europeans do.”

He didn’t have a gun to my head.
Security guards were posted nearby.
We were in the busy well-lit hotel lobby.

And still, I didn’t feel I could say no.
Instead, I thought: I need a new job.
Instead, I thought: my fault.

 

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