Clocks ticking Keys jingling Hearts pacing Thoughts racing Unaware of this race To safety I have constantly been playing Looking over the shoulder Paranoid Of who might gain on me The shadows are my friends The loneliness is an enemy Preparing myself, to be Ready Just in case . . . Clocks ticking Keys jingling Hearts pacing Thoughts racing The consistency to haste Attached permanently Paranoid Of the races home To protection Depending on a soldier When the shield is me Within me Within us —Women Prepared, to be Ready Just in case . . . We need to be Ready For unexpected Actions Of People Who wish to hurt us Emotionally Not on a schedule, or Based on fear— But with confident assumptions Just in case . . .