Monday, January 20, 2014

Who Should Have Mercy

Maybe I'm selfish.  Maybe thoughts like mine should belong
to the mother whose water broke as she stumbled along
Maybe thoughts like mine should be held back and stored
So I can live up to man-image who's pain is ignored.

If I have no ego to protect, why would I do that?

Medicine surpassed rubbing of leaves on the wounds
and it evolved past the sexes and roles of the goons
and it reached up and out quickly to touch children and women
and has arrived now to touch both Lions and Tinmen.

But I can't.  I'm a man.  I played football and skydived and
got into fistfights and jumped off of high dives
and joined the world's strongest military, serving with honor.
Saved drowning victims twice.  Fished with Grizzlies just yonder.

Opened my knee with a chainsaw, broke my foot sliding into home,
Ate a worm for a dollar, lost both big toenails from moving , alone.
Rode an unbroken horse and stayed unbroken after impact
Jumped off bridges, fled cops, all wearing underwear and a ball cap.

And I sit here in pain so severe that I can't describe it
My spine and my knee keep it constantly ignited.

The medicine has evolved, it's able to treat me
to force pain to subside the the point I could be me
But me is no more, that boy from the past
Who ran down a hiked mountain with a sprained ankle, fast
With concern that if we went slow, it would swell up too large
I'm down now, rolling down, arms still raised in victory
Rolling down like a stump who needs only to look tough
While the fire in my mind asks, "When is enough?

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