Time For Me To Fight Back

Let’s talk who is to blame, here. No. Really. Let’s talk who is at fault. Who did NOT do what they should have done. And let’s start with the infamous case of Brock Turner, of Stanford University, in Stanford, California.

Am I to blame for the actions this disgusting individual took? I’m asking an honest question here. Because there are plenty of voices, almost every one of them women, who have informed me that I am. That I’m a white guy, and so I’m partly to blame.

So. Let me put this realistically. I live in Virginia Beach, VA. Brock Turner did his antics in Stanford, California. If I start right now, and drive non stop until I get there, Google Maps says I will drive 45 hours and something minutes, and over 3 thousand miles before I get there to stop Mr. Turner from doing whatever he decides to do on the spur of the moment.

Clearly, there was no way I could have stopped him once he got started. I’d have arrived about two days after the fact. So, saying I didn’t stop him makes as much sense to me as saying I didn’t prevent Donald Trump from saying the magic words, “Grab her by the pussy.”

I didn’t stop either person. I physically could not have. At the time they did what they did, I was hundreds, of not thousands of miles away from them. Hell, I never heard the name “Brock Turner” until he turned up on MSN news. I never even knew he existed. And if not for the news, I would still have no idea who he is.

But, apparently I’m at least partly to blame for what he did. So says the logic of the argument that’s been used to beat me over the head.

I did not raise him. I did not teach him. I did not live anywhere near him. I had no influence on him, or his development. I had no contact with his parents. Or any of his relatives. I did not attend any churches he attended. I did not attend any social activities he attended. I did not work with him. The man, very literally, did not exist, as far as I am concerned, until his name showed up on MSN News one day.

But, you see. I’m a white guy. So, clearly, I contributed to his behavior, and I certainly didn’t do enough to condemn it.

Let’s talk blame here. Seriously. Let’s talk who is responsible for the behavior of Roy Moore. A white guy. And an apparent pedophile. Roy Moore is 70 years old. That’s 12 years older than I am. Clearly. I was not involved in raising him. Nor was I involved in teaching him how to behave. The man was a high school graduate when I was a six year old boy in first grade.

Let’s go further, why not? I first heard of Roy Moore after Donald Trump was elected President. That’s right. I never heard of Roy Moore prior to 2017. I should also say it’s very likely I would not have heard of Roy Moore at all if it wasn’t for Donald Trump’s election. Because, that election precipitated the events that lead to Mr. Moore making national headlines for his indiscretions with underage girls. I should also mention that those indiscretions occurred quite a few years prior to the headlines of the past few months.

But, it would seem, once again, that as a white guy, I’m at least partly to blame for Mr. Moore’s actions. Either because I didn’t stop him. Or I didn’t visit Alabama to straighten his ass out. Or I didn’t show up on his doorstep with a gun, and an arrest warrant when he thought with his dick, and not his brain, however many years ago it was.

Let’s keep this process alive, shall we? Yes, it’s clearly pissing you off. Because it’s clearly blowing holes all through the argument that I’m to blame for the actions of other white men.

Let’s talk about someone who was once on my Facebook Friends list. They had a rough time. I know that. I didn’t know they were having a rough time when it was happening. Let’s be honest, here. The only contact I’ve ever had with them is through text exchanged through Facebook, and Twitter. Outside of that, they may as well live in Agrabah, the fictional Disney city of Princess Jasmine, from the movie Aladdin. Because I have never encountered them outside of Facebook and Twitter. And now that they’ve departed the United States, the odds of me having my foot run over in a parking lot by a snooty dude driving a Maserati are better than the odds of me meeting them.

Turns out they had an ex husband. One who owned a gun. One who wasn’t a nice guy. One who abused them.

Turns out, somehow, because I’m a white guy, I’m partly to blame for the actions of that guy, their ex husband.

Yeah. I can’t figure that one out either. Hell, I don’t even know who the guy is. Or where he lives, other than to say he’s probably somewhere between the Atlantic Ocean, and the Mississippi River, in the United States.

But, you see. I didn’t teach him how to behave. I didn’t teach him how to be a real man. I didn’t teach him how to treat other people, especially women. I didn’t teach him to respect the wishes of women, or their privacy, or their needs. I did not teach him when to physically approach a woman, and when to back away from one. I did not teach them to go out of his way to illustrate to a woman that she is safe, and will always be safe, around him.

So, it seems I’m partly to blame for the things he did. Because. I’m part of the system, you see. Part of what’s wrong with US Society. I’m a white guy. And that’s all there is to it.

As a person who has asked, more than once, and more than one woman, “Am I doing anything wrong? Am I doing something I shouldn’t do? Have I done anything that made you uncomfortable?” Having declared I wanted them to be safe, and if it helped I’d keep a wall, a desk, a partition, a table, or other hefty physical object between us, so they would know I wasn’t a threat. Having shoved my hands in my pockets, and backed away from women, more than once. Having completely left, completely removed myself from someone’s presence, permanently, to keep that someone safe, and to guarantee they would always feel safe from me.

Having done these things.

It’s so very apparent it’s my fault that other white men have grown into slimes who need to be staked out in the desert to learn what true sunburn is, and to experience just how bad sunburn can get.

You want to know why I’ve become an angry white man?

I just told you.

Read this again.

Then tell me I have no right to be angry. And tell me how ALL men are responsible.

And just remember. It’s because you endlessly beat me over the head with declarations of my guilt, and declarations of my responsibility for the truly disturbing things that happened to you, and declarations that I needed to be put in jail (No. Literally. That’s been said to me. More than you know. Far more than you know.) just because I’m a privileged, racist, sexist, misogynistic white man. And made to pay for all the crimes of every white man.

And all this, despite trying everything I know to try, learning everything I can learn, and doing the best I can, to keep women safe around me, and around others?

You want to know why I’ve become an angry white man?

Read this again.

 

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To Those Who Are Concerned…

There was a time. Years ago. When my world burned to the ground, and left me with nothing but ashes, and bare dirt. There was a time I spoke the words, “To those who are concerned.” I will not debate grammar rules, and whether this should have been “whom” and not “who”.

I will, however, repeat what I said then. This is for those who are concerned.

I have tried to explain. I have tried to find the words. I have expended all my strength. All my energy. All my courage. Endurance. Patience. All of it. Trying to explain that which I see. I have said (check my status history on Facebook, if you doubt this) countless times there is no right or wrong, no left or right, no good or evil, no just or unjust, no us or them, no ethical or unethical, no moral or immoral.

I stand by that.

And I stand, as I have always stood. By myself. Misunderstood. And treated as guilty. Because.

I am white.

I am male.

And I will no longer listen when you say to me, “It’s ALL men!”

I will no longer listen when you say to me, “ALL white people are racists!”

I will no longer listen when you pronounce, “Of course you don’t care! You’re a White Man! You can afford NOT to care!”

I would say, instead, the following.

Before my 40th birthday, in 1993, yes, 24 years ago. Before my 40th birthday, my primary care physician said these words to me. They are burned into my brain cells forever. I can never be free of them.

“On those mornings you wake up, and you ache. You know those mornings. I know you understand what I’m saying. On those mornings you wake up, and you ache. Take your naproxen.”

I was 34 years old. 34.

And this morning, I woke up. Not because I was rested. Not because I’d had enough sleep. Not because I felt wide awake. I woke up because.

Some invisible man with a crowbar was shoving that crowbar under my right collar bone, and trying to pry it out of my body.

Some invisible man with a baseball bat was pounding on my right hip.

Some invisible man with a nail gun was hammering nails into my right ankle.

Some invisible man with a wrench had clamped that sucker down on the right ligaments of my left knee, and was twisting that bitch for all he was worth.

I woke up because.

I fucking hurt.

And yes. I fucking took my naproxen.

There are more words to say. Many more.

I remember my days at Old Dominion University, from August of 1977 through May of 1982. I remember more than once, screaming at the gods, at the universe, how it could allow someone as priceless as her, my friend, to be hurt in that way.

I used to do as she asked, you know. I walked with her. All over the place. Countless places I had no interest in going. Places I went, and did nothing. Why? Because. It helped her feel safe. Period. Seeing all six feet two inches of me, next to her, seeing the physical presence that is me, next to tiny, delicate, fragile her.

Guys left her alone. She told me that. “I said goodbye to you, while I stood you in the doorway to the class. And since that day, the guy that was harassing me, bothering me, wouldn’t leave me alone. He’s left me alone, and never bothered me since.”

Don’t tell me I don’t understand!

1984, in the halls of Dam Neck US Naval Base. When I stepped between my friend Denise. And the chaos that was a male sailor, who’d failed an exam yet again, and was lashing out, and being chased by the Military Police. And was physically resisting. When I placed her behind me, without hesitation. To keep her safe. To protect her.

From him.

Don’t tell me I don’t understand!

I understand so very well. I know what happened in 1996 through 2001, when I took Aikido classes, three times a week. I know what happened in those classes, every time a new behemoth male showed up to study. Either as a visitor from another dojo, or as a new regular at ours. I remember how I was endlessly singled out to partner with those individuals. Because.

I’m six feet two inches tall. And everyone in my Aikido class knew, including the instructor. I was tough as nails. And those behemoths were not a significant threat to me. It kept others safe. It reduced the risk of injury to them. It reduced the amount of pain they felt.

Don’t tell me I don’t understand!

I can speak countless stories from my 58 years of life. Am I perfect? No. Have I made mistakes? Yes. Do I have regrets? Yes.

And I will no longer accept blame for not being able to stop the independent actions of others. Do you get that? I will no longer nod my head, and say, “We must all stand up to the worst of ourselves, and stop them.”

I have learned, you see. I can change another, change another’s beliefs, another’s learned behavior, another’s sacred religious faith, another’s response to this world. Every bit as much as I can change lead into gold. Every bit as much as I can bring my four dead cats that I miss dearly back to life, and spend time with them. Every bit as much as I can tell the heavens, “There’s a drought in Phoenix! They haven’t had rain in 90 days! Make it rain there!” And have the heavens listen to me.

I cannot change another human being. All I can do is lead by my example. And pray, and wish, and hope, that other human being learns.

Monday, 12 December 2017, I logged out of my Facebook and twitter accounts. Because. Because of everything I just said above. Because. In the eyes of social media, I’m a guilty, privileged, racist, sexist, misogynistic white man. And I’m hell bent on defending the status quo, and keeping all my privileges.

You want to know why I shut down? Why I walked away.

I just told you.

If my reward for caring. My reward for changing myself, and for talking of those changes with others. My reward for defending women from men. My reward for supporting the rights of non-white people. My reward for standing for the rights, and freedoms, and even recognition of the right to exist, for people of non-binary gender. Is to be called, relentlessly, a privileged, racist, sexist, bigoted, hate filled white male, who can’t understand, and deserves to have every last shred of his existence taken from him, and should be placed in a prison camp, and made to work until he falls over dead from exhaustion, and gets raped endlessly by other, bigger male prisoners. If that is my reward for supporting others.

Then I will no longer support them.

And I will no longer care what they have to say.

And I will continue with my life. As best I can. As best I can learn how. Using what limited skills, and talents, and intelligence the universe granted me in this world.

To those who are concerned.

I’m done accepting the blame for the things I have not done.

And now, I’ve silenced you. I can no longer hear your words. You may scream at me all you wish. But so long as I do not exist in your world. I won’t know. And I will be free from your judgment of me.

And to those who can’t understand what I’ve just said. And how I can be so angry. Now you know. Now you know where all the angry white men have come from.

You made us.

Mark.

#ThursThreads Week 293 : You’re Better Off Here With Me

It was 0530 hours, and the police arrived at the front door of Samantha’s home. They didn’t even pretend to be polite. They arrested Samantha’s parents, and took Samantha with them, to put her in protective services. One officer tried to keep them safe from harm. “You’re better off here with me. I can protect you from them. And whatever it is that’s blowing shit up.”

Samantha looked around, and saw nothing abnormal. But she spoke anyway. “You’re there, aren’t you. Watching.”

A voice from nowhere answered, “Yes.” The officers drew their guns. “I’m watching. And if you, or your parents are hurt. In any way.” I paused. The officers pointed guns at Samantha.

She nodded, “I know.”

I didn’t speak for a moment. The air was still. The neighbors watched, peaking from their windows, and standing on their front porches. “If they hurt you. I’ll know. And I’ll kill them all. Every last one of them.”

“Please,” she whispered, “hasn’t there been enough violence. Enough shooting. Enough dead people?” She waited a moment for me to answer, “Wasn’t what happened to Michelle enough?”

“They want everyone dead.” The officers swung their guns everywhere, looking for my voice, looking for me. “Even you, Samantha. Even you.”

“Why?”

“Because. You’re different.”

The officer next to Samantha spoke, “Who are you?”

“I am the violence.” My voice came from nowhere. “Birthed by blind hatred. That hatred dies, I go away.”

They never found me. No matter where they looked.

247 Words
@mysoulstears


Yet another part of the ongoing Armor 17 story. It’s Week 293 of #ThursThreads, hosted by Siobhan Muir. Please go read all the entries in this week’s #ThursThreads. They are always fun to read.

That’s How We Roll

Her profile picture looked cute enough. And that was one problem. She had red hair, which I like. Red hair turned me stupid. I couldn’t focus around it. So, yeah. That was another problem. Facebook reported we had 39 friends in common. 39. A nice, safe number. She had green eyes. I knew from her profile pictures, she had green eyes. And two cats. Divorced. It was quite a problem list.

Why? Why was it a problem list?

See. I was me. A guy. Even worse. A 58 year old guy. Worse of all, a 58 year old white guy. You know what that means, don’t you. It means I was part of the problem. Part of what was wrong with the world. I was part of the patriarchy, part of the privileged people who couldn’t even see the problem. Couldn’t understand the problem. Even if I was one of the few who knew the problem existed, I couldn’t understand the scope of the problem. Or how privileged I was. Or how many freedoms I had. Because. I was a 58 year old white guy.

I’d never grown up wondering if I was going to be sexually assaulted at school. If the church pastor would get naked in my presence. If the father of my next door neighbor was going to shove his hands down my pants.

I’d never grown up wondering if I could get a job. Because. Everybody knew. White guys like me always got jobs. It was that simple. And it wouldn’t be a job mopping floors, or cleaning bathrooms. I was a white guy. I’d get a real job. Whatever the hell a real job was.

I never had to go into debt to get a college education. Never had to choose between eating dinner for a week, or making the student loan payment. Never had to lay face down on the street, spread eagled, to keep the cops from shooting me.

I was a white guy. You get that? A white guy.

And that was all the problems. And it would always be all the problems.

Oh, I knew the best part of that too. See. I was a white guy. That meant, if I wanted to be a friend to someone on a social network, or at work, or at church, or anywhere else. It was up to me. I had to make the effort to be the friend.

Because. I was a white guy. And we all knew, everybody knew, if you’re a woman, you don’t ask a guy to be your friend. That’s inappropriate.

So, I looked at her picture again. She was cute. And I was an older white guy. I thought that summed it up nicely.

I clicked on the button that said remove. Because. I knew the truth. It was wrong for me to ask. Because. I was a white guy. A 58 year old white guy.

And she was cute.

And she’d never ask.

So that was it. All I’d ever do was remember, from time to time, that I’d done the only thing I could. And pretended I’d never seen her picture.

Because.

Isn’t that how life is anymore? Especially for 58 year old white guys?

I finished checking for any messages, or interactions with people on Facebook. Then, I logged out. And closed the browser. And sighed. And I wondered what I’d do when my lady died. Not that there was much to wonder about. She was the only person I had in my life.

If she was gone…

I killed that thought. I knew I’d deal with that problem when it arrived. There was no sense in rushing it.

It was going to be another night of Ancient Aliens, and video games, and maybe some music videos on Youtube.

Why?

Because.

I was a 58 year old white guy.

And that’s how we roll.

That’s how we roll.

Dear Andrew…

Dear Andrew,

Wherever you may be, in whatever part of existence, whatever dimensions we find ourselves when we’ve passed beyond the veil of this life. I wish to speak with your soul for a moment, if I may. Because, there are things I would say. Words I have never spoken. About this world I remain within. This world you could no longer live within.

I know the darkness, you know. The agony. The torture. Where you pray, “God, please. Shoot me. Put me in a car wreck. Break my bones. Crush these hands. Anything. Anything, please. I don’t care what it is, so long as you take the reason my soul aches this way from me.” Where all you want, all you dream of, is for your heart to no longer bleed, and your soul to no longer cry.

In know the darkness, and I always have, where no one understands, and no one sees. Because they are too wrapped up inside the world they elect to live within. With their looks into the mirror each morning, and the same words Bob Fosse said before every scene in “All That Jazz”. You know those words too, I know that. “It’s show time!” As he took his pills, washed them down with alcohol, and dulled his heartache with tobacco.

It’s so horrible, isn’t it. To know how many wake each day, and rather than think, rather than feel, rather than look at the flowers blooming in their gardens outside, or the clouds in the pale blue sky, they look in the mirror, and they say unspoken words. I know you heard those words too. The same words I hear every day. “Don’t think. Don’t feel. Just do it. Just do the job.”

For some of us, well. We can’t live that way. You know. We just can’t. We try, God how we try. And we stare at the ceiling every night, after everyone around us has long since gone to sleep, and we wonder how long, how many more days, we can keep doing this. How many more days we can keep living a lie. How many days we can pretend everything is OK. How many days we have to wonder how many people were shot to death. How many people went to bed hungry. How many haven’t eaten in days. How many drowned everything in another six pack of beer. Or ate the entire box of cookies and watched TV until they passed out, so they didn’t have to notice what they felt.

I’m so sorry, Andrew, that I didn’t say these words to you sooner. That I didn’t say to you, “I know the darkness.”

Now? Now you will be a memory to most. Some, those who truly were close to you, will always remember you. Your smile. The time you spent with them. The way you made it all OK, no matter how awful their day had been.

And, you will be myth. A story they tell their children, and their friends. “You musn’t be like him.” They’ll do what people do. They’ll speak of you in whispers. “He shot himself, you know. It’s so sad. We never saw it coming.”

And the darkness will stay right where it is. People will get up each day, to go to work. And just like Bob Fosse in that movie. They’ll take their pills, wash them down with alcohol, and then numb their bodies, and their feelings with tobacco. Or they’ll drink their coffee, and eat too many donuts, and have a toke or two, so they can cope. So they don’t have to feel. So they don’t have to think. So they can look at each other, and nod their heads, and say, “It’s all good.”

They’ll never admit otherwise, you know. They never will. Someone they know starves to death, and they’ll do what they always do. You’ll see it on Facebook, and Twitter. “It’s so sad, what happened.” And then, they’ll get up the next morning, and make like Bob Fosse again.

And slowly kill themselves, one day at a time, until they can’t feel anything at all.

I know the Darkness, Andrew.

And it breaks my heart to know that darkness finally broke your heart, and left it bleeding. That it beat your soul until only tears, and bruises remained.

And it breaks my heart to know.

Nothing will change.

Nothing will change.

Nothing will change.

And I know. That’s why you had to leave. Because, you saw that truth too. You saw.

Nothing will change.

Whatever dimensions you live in now, somewhere beyond the veil of this life. I wish you happiness. And joy. And all the things the darkness in this life takes away. May those who know, who you are now with, take care of you, and help you heal, so you can shine the light you are meant to shine. A light this world only seeks to destroy.

I hope, Andrew, you don’t mind that I speak these words now. I know I should have said them sooner. But, sometimes, my own war with this darkness we live within blinds me to everything but the bleeding of my own heart, and the tears my own soul cries.

Be at peace now, my friend.

And someday. We will meet again.

Your friend,
Mark.

 

“Write What Scares You” Part 3.

Like I said. I’m fire breathing angry about people telling me I don’t understand, when I do understand, and far better than any of those people realize. So.  More words I’ve written in the past month.


So you know. When the ACA gets destroyed (and the GOP, in US Congress, and The Donald, clearly want to get rid of the ACA), My eldest child will be uninsured. So you know. They’ve spent the past 4 years looking for work. And finding none. Can’t get a job at Walmart. Can’t get a job at BestBuy. Can’t get a job picking fruit on a farm. Can’t get a job washing feces out of stables.

4 years of effort. No job. Not even a nibble.

No 401K, no 403B, no retirement fund of any kind, no contributions to Social Security. No work. None. Nada. Zip. 4 years.

There are 95 million like them in the US. People who have left the workforce. Because, they can’t find work. Period. There are no jobs for them. When even McDonalds won’t hire you, what does that say? How do you deal with that? How do you “work hard, and get an education, and make something of yourself” when that’s what your dealing with? Hell, even starting a small business is anything but trivial, as there’s no source of income, and therefore no funds, to start it with.

This is what a lot of millennials are dealing with. More of them are dealing with this very problem, all the time.

I know 30 year olds, mid-30s, who can’t find a job. College educated. Able to type. Able to run a computer. Able to word process. Able to fill in forms. Able to be an office assistant in any office, anywhere. Able to man phone lines, and work in call centers. And. They can’t get work. They can’t find work. They beg for gig work, online. “Go visit my Fiver page! For $5 I’ll do a Tarot reading for you! For $5, I’ll record any song you want me to sing, and you can give it away as a Christmas present, or a Birthday present!”

One of my dear Facebook Friends (whom I hope to meet in Atlanta in September, at Dragon*Con) is disabled. She lives in physical pain that leaves her on her back, on the floor, gasping for breath, tears streaming from her eyes. She’s doing everything she can. But, the medical insurance has become a problem, after the past few years. And her disability claims have so far been denied. And, she’s been out of work now for over 2 years. She didn’t quit her job. She had to give up her job, ’cause she physically could not be at the school she worked at, every day it was open. She missed more, and more days.

I worry about her.

She’s got a GoFundMe page, where she asks for help with her medical expenses. And she’s got a small store on the net, where she tries to earn any money she can to help pay the medical bills. For her, a ride from the house, to the Georgia coast, is pure misery. She ends up in such physical pain she can’t sleep when she gets there. Sometimes, she goes for days on only a couple of hours of sleep, because that’s how much she hurts.

Did I mention I worry about her?

She literally can’t work hard, and get ahead. Literally.

There’s others. The list of names goes on and on. If I had the income, I could spend well over $100 a week, just on GoFundMe pages, helping people obtain the medical care they need to simply stay alive. And telling those people, “Get a job, and deal with it” doesn’t work. Because. They’ve been trying to get jobs for years, and have gotten nowhere.

The best part? Almost to a person, none of them would be welcome in any church I’ve ever tried to attend. Because. They are different. They don’t fit the social behavior requirements of any of those churches.

Another reason I don’t attend any church.

Yeah, I know. I’ve been told, repeatedly, “Those people need the church!” I know that. But. Sending a homosexual, or transgender person to a church? Really? That’s gonna help them? Sending a person who has had brain damage and memory loss from a concussion to a church is going to help that person? Hell, the church is likely to absolutely torture these people.

Yes. I try very hard to understand. I do. I try very hard to look at things from more than one perspective. I really do. I understand completely how people feel about things like the ACA, and Social Security. I honestly do.

I also understand how people would behave about those same topics if it was someone they knew. Someone they cared about. A daughter. A son. A mother. A father. Brother, or sister.

I find it amazing how cold, and heartless some people can be, in proclaiming, “Get a job! Earn your keep!” and how desperately they fight for the government support of their relatives and/or friends, when it’s someone close to them.

And I find it a striking contrast far too many people are completely blind to. Completely, totally blind.

There are reasons I spent 6 years in psychotherapy. And there are reasons I take 40 mg of fluoxetine every freakin’ day. Because. I see this kind of behavior all around me, every day, all day long.

And it literally drives me mad.

So, now I’m waiting to see what changes start to happen at the Federal Government level. And to see how those changes affect people. Something I can afford to do. Sit back and wait. Because. I’m a white male. I’ll be OK.


Yes. I’m angry. I’m tired of dealing with people who can’t see the double standards that apply to everything they touch in life, and refuse to admit those standards even exist. And yes. In the days ahead, I’ll have more to say.

If you can’t handle that. If you can’t handle me speaking of the things I observe around me every day. Then fucking leave.

I Am Still Here

I am still here.
Still breathing.
My heart still beats.
So I know
I am still here.

My fingertips still feel everything.
The flow of the air,
The slightest change in heat,
Be it warmer, or colder.
Every detail.
Of everything.

I hear the words you speak.
I hear the rustle of leaves,
Blowing in the wind.
The emotion in your words.
That little tint of color.
Though you try to hide it.
Squelch it.

I still see the details in your eyes.
The things you think
No one sees.
The hidden pain.
The hidden anger.
The hidden fear.
The desperation.
In the lines around your eyes.
In the color and its subtle shifts.

Though I lack the words.
Lack the ability to tell you.
To describe it to you.
It’s all there.
As it’s always been.

And again.
Tonight.
As I have throughout my life.
I look to God.
The universe.
Life.
And I ask,
Plead,
Beg,
As I always have.

Make me numb.
Turn my heart to stone.
Blind these eyes, so I see nothing.
Burn these fingers,
These hands,
Till no skin is left.

So I don’t have to feel.
Anything.
Ever.

Make me numb.

And even as I plead.
Even as my soul cries out.
I know.

Life,
The universe,
God.
Sadly whisper once again.
“No.”

Because.
I know.
I understand.
If I could not see the despair in your eyes.
Could not hear the desperation in your voice.
Could not feel the subtle tremble in your hands.

I would never see the magic in your eyes
Every time you smile.
I would never hear the passion in your words,
Your voice,
When you speak of the many things
You love.
I would never feel the warmth,
The tenderness,
Of your touch.

And when I scream in frustration,
And my own silent desperation,
I hear life whisper in my ear.

“Wait. Just wait.
And the storm will pass.
You will see.
You already know.
So.
Wait.”

And I am still here.