They Never Told Me

They never told me I’d grow old and weary
with work and sleep and nothing else
chafing at my bonds and cursing limitations
choking on that bit that connects to the reigns
spewing venom at my friends so that
when at last they have all run away
I can stare at the empty spaces
and take pride in discovering
these betrayers.

They never told me I’d be broken and bitter
a thing that stares out the window
and feels like a faint reflection
trapped in strangers’ mirrors
a memory or unlikely possibility
without form, life or function
but anger that fate has made me
this incorporeal wisp of smoke
and lingering regret.

They never told me I would despise the light
because only in the shadows
might my soul have substance
or that only when I am sleeping
can I recall childhood melodies
that used to comfort angry wounds
and seduce me unto slumber
distracting me from reality
and the pain of knowing.

Kings Mountain, NC
November 19, 2006

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