I wrote this poem last night in the bath and am just getting around to typing it up and posting it. I did small amount of editing (added a couple lines to the next to last stanza) today. Here you go:
How do you survive other people’s wishes?
the guilt of all they’ve done all they do
for you for you
weighing down a house of bricks
This is what we want to do.
Don’t you want it, too?
No and no and I don’t want to hurt
you for all your I love you, buts.
How do you survive other people’s definitions?
my ring finger is shrinking wedding ring keeps slipping slipping
all the lullabies to the moon
and in the terrible box my dreams are shrieking
the baby cries ghostly drifting away
the pretty, pretty hobbit house of earth and gardens
homegrown food to eat
taste of sunshine glory of land
children’s feet running through fields
hands feeding rescued cows
the glimmer of known enough
as I am signing books with my name
for fans, those fast, formidable friends
the happy face the happy face
infinity heart the terrible box
that glistens my tears like a razor’s edge.
How do you survive other people?
they shape you with their little lies
never struck you struck you that fresh memory of a belt
stinging out the hateful tears
or the hesitation yes, he’s alright alright
he was waiting for Death
they shape you with what they hide
the queer histories the Secret Keeper’s scent
they shape you with what you find
the readers the questions scrawled in Bibles
volunteers in the wide world helping hands
You survive if you can.
And what if I can’t
what if I can’t? Do I let go
let go the soft wisp of want
for the deadened march of duty
of ought of other people’s marks
on my skin?
© 2015 by Robin A. Sams