By George A. Boyd ©1993
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.