Who and Why

posted 05 May 2002

Why the guilt,
why the shame,
why the constant endless pain?

Is it right
that they sleep at night,
not knowing they've condemned me?

Why must I
feel I should die
to satisfy another's plan?

Who are they
to look at me,
and pronounce upon what is right?

Who's to say
that I have come
from the dark or from the light?

Why must I
judge myself
upon the empty words of others?

Why am I
not strong enough
to stand up with the others?

Why does every
backward glance,
every moment's brief distraction,
in my mind
grow many times
to a storm of violent action?

Why do I
feel constant eyes,
watchful, judgeful on my back?

Every devious thing I do,
another hour
on the rack.

Surely retribution's coming,
marked up in a tally book,
waiting for a final slip, an evil thought, a misplaced look.

Why must I
take heed of them,
why can I not cast aside
a thousand years
of bigotry
and hatred taken from the sky?

And why must I
be the unknown
that draws a fear in every heart,
why must I
be all alone,
torn from what I was once a part?

The evil thought
comes up to me:
if I were to fall back to grace,
I feel that I
would be as them,
I'd have that sneer upon my face.

I'd hate me for being
what I am,
I'd swallow all the bigotry,
I'd beat and kick
and kill and scream
for just a look upon my face.

Who am I
to judge of them,
to judge of those who judge of me?
I know that I
would be as them
if I were not what I must be.

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