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Mudrashram Institute of Spiritual Studies

 

 

 

Shame

 

By George A. Boyd ©1993

Excerpted from The Mind of Perfect Faith

 

I have been awake all night in the rain,

In the echoing thunder.

My mind does not sleep,

And my eyes have no tears.

 

I have screamed in this valley like a madman.

I hear my voice echoing, mocking me,

Cascading off the canyon walls.

I am alone in my grief and my pain.

 

I have tried to reach out to another heart,

But she is deaf and does not hear me.

I feel trapped here, behind my empty glass,

While my friend smiles, distracted.

 

My friends are laughing, but I cannot join them.

They muse upon their merry thoughts.

They look at me but do not see me.

They pass me by, unresponsively.

 

I gnash my teeth at my folly, and feel regret

For my past that I cannot change;

For my future that I cannot predict.

I offer my brokenness upon this moment's altar.

 

When I confessed my confusion to my parents,

Their tongues cut into my viscera,

Like eelskin whips to purge me of the sin

Of telling the truth about my feelings.

 

I turn to the walls to hide me, but they are transparent.

I turn the stars to forgive me; they twinkle with dispassion.

I turn to the sea to cleanse me; She retreats in revulsion.

I turn down the wick on the lamp so I cannot see my face.

 

I cried out, sitting up erect in my sarcophagus,

In my tattered mummy clothes, begging

For respect, love and appreciation,

But I am sincerely ignored.

 

I beat with bloodied fists on the door of my dungeon.

The guardians of the tomb refuse to answer.

I have only cold stone now to keep me company

As the rain drums on, outside the prison window.

 

I hear the footstep of the rat, the whisper of the gnat.

Silent is my chamber, to magnify my horror.

I can no longer flee from these visions that haunt me,

As I look into the visage of my dreaded, deepest shame.

 

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