Almost four years before it’s believed she was murdered at the hands of her father, Katrina Miles penned a haunting poem about domestic violence.
The 35-year-old Western Australian mum, along with her four children Taye, 13, Rylan, 12, Ayre, 10, and Kayden, eight, were shot dead in their beds on Friday morning. It’s suspected Peter Miles, 61, was the gunman, who then shot his wife Cynda before turning the gun on himself at their Margaret River property in an act of family violence.
It speaks of "open handed fists" and verbal abuse with phrases typical of a violent partner, such as "No one would want you", "worthless" and "bitch".
"The shrieks of my children, the echo of my shouts, the thump of my dignity slammed against a wall, the odour of stale beer has a name called fear," one part reads.
It's not clear whether the poem is fictional or based on Katrina's lived experiences. However, in it the narrator asks "how can I be five places at once?" and references "my only daughter" and "three sons".
"I look in the young eyes that still love me. I ask myself, so ashamed, 'How can my children still love me?' I stayed so long, so long."
In a statement to media, Katrina's ex-partner and the father of their children, Aaron Cockman, said that he had been "cut off" from his kids for six months and blamed Peter and Cynda Miles for that.
You can read the full poem here:
I’m battered not broken
By Katrina Miles
I stare into the depths of my worries
The crease between the frown
The hollowness of my cheeks is an echo
My stomach beats to the litany of my hurts