Read Poem: THE UNSTEADY SKIN OF MY MAN, by Shewan Edward

the trees were rooted
but swaying in a wind
that blew with such force
that branches were stitches coming

and in that impetuous wind,
where the seams of my skin followed suit
and came undone,
i sat as still as i would allow myself.

and i lied.
i whispered all the lies
i’d been learning from five years old
until now.

and then lies became truth.
truth became rehearsed.
and the rehearsals fortified the foundation
where standing and sitting
and lying down
grew into the different levels of expectations.

i expected to find unison
in this shallow valley of hearts.
i expected to earn my way in learning
your rights from my wrongs.

cynical or jaded,
silly or uninformed,
call me all the names falling
from your sky.
throw onto me all the words
you feel are warranted,
and sign the warrants that will bring me into
the metallic prisons
where trees don’t reach my skies,
where colored flowers don’t bloom,
where my ancestors aren’t remembered.

i’ll be jailed
but i will find the freedom
from the stitches,
from the lies,
from the expectations,
from the vigorous wind
where i feel tempted to fall,
tempted to run into the darkness.

i find i rarely ask for harbor and help,
and whether i need it
or want it to ease a pinch of sorrow,
my instinct is to act alone.
i have unearthed safety in the not asking.
but have revealed no risk in the standing alone,
no risk of being hurt and
hindered by the outsider.

but in the self-made prisons,
and in the ones constructed
by a world unsteady,
a world not ready to see me as this man,
there are times when i am in need of kindness,
and the tree whispers that one of those times is now.


Author: poetryfest

Submit your Poetry to the Festival. Three Options: 1) To post. 2) To have performed by an actor 3) To be made into a film.

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