70 x 7 + 1

They always said
that what he really meant
was a figure so unimaginably large
there was no way
anyone would reach it

that what he was really saying was
you had to forgive
an infinite number of times
and then still more

After all
who could need forgiving that often?

So I forgave
and forgave again
the smirk
the belittling
the ignoring
the dismissing
of everything that mattered
and made me me.

I forgave
and forgave again
the anger
and the names
the threat of the slap
and the bruise of betrayal.

I forgave the life that got sucked out of me
every day.

I forgave
and forgave again
once more
although I didn’t have it in me
although it used up every ounce of love
and hope
I had for him
and for me
and the world

until there was none left

And still I forgave again.

And then
one day
when I had lost count,
when I had passed all the numbers I knew
and couldn’t add a single one
I had the faith
to listen
to the voice that says

Don’t do this forever.

You count too much.

Enough.