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What Is the Value of Life If This Is All It Is Reduced To?

A quiet but merciless
centrifugal force
of inarticulate gibberish
burst from people’s lips
around me.
There is no respite
from the meaning
I fail to discern
in their murmurings.
There is no peace
to be had from moving lips
and flailing hands
that corner me.
There is no life
that doesn’t include
this meaningless
display.
Then what’s the value
of a life
if this is all
it is reduced to?

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I Shrink Down Next To You

Blanketed by darkness
that nestles itself
around my heart –
probing my brain
with foggy tentacles
for light left –

Leaden arms and legs
that feel unlike my own
and a voice that speaks
through my mouth
though I can’t hear the words
or stop the sound –

Did the world always
turn so slowly?
Was the light always
this dull?
How come you don’t see
the changes
while I shrink down
next to you?

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The Seer – The Seen

She sits alone in darkness
around her there is light
and she hears happy voices
but they are out of sight –

There’s many degrees of darkness,
there’s many shades of shade,
there’s much to be absorbed by
in the absence of the light –

A life in an eternal night –

And she is right beside you
but hidden in the shade
that neither sees the other through –

I see – I see – I see you –
I see you thinking I don’t see,
I see you thinking I miss out
on life –
And yes!, All that I do is see
since that is all I am allowed
but I am not the one who’s
missing out –
I am the only one of us who sees –

“What do you see?”
“I’d rather keep you happy
by not letting it
shine through.”

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I Have No Voice That You Can Hear

I heard your question.
I strove to answer.

The words swelled in my throat,
they got stuck, wiggling their way out,
writhing, tearing at my windpipe –

You just stood there.
You just stared at me.

But the words were there –
it wasn’t for lack of trying –
it’s just that I have no voice
that you can hear.

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Standing There Alone

Standing there alone
wondering
who those people are
and what they think.
Milling around me,
talking,
but the words do not
make sense.
It’s endless humming
without meaning,
and it tires me out.

From a distance
every word
sounds like a buzz
and people lose
their eyes.
Everybody looks the same
and sounds the same
and move around the same way,
and I laugh
at their concept
of individuality.

I won’t purport to know them
based on having met
or talked with them before –
there is no point,
no purpose
and no plan.

It takes so long
to get to know somebody –
it takes so much work.
You have to see them
in so many situations,
assess their feelings
and thoughts –
and, let’s be honest:
None of you
care for that much work.

So I will not approach you,
just observe
and think.
And write, perhaps,
and maybe,
if the need should strike me,
drink…

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It’s Not That I Don’t Care

It’s not that I don’t care
it’s that I do not have the energy
to respond
that which you want to hear.

It’s not that I don’t see
it’s that I see too much
of then and now
and what will fail to be.

It’s not that I don’t hear
it’s that there is no point in saying
anything
since you won’t really hear.

It’s just the way I feel
and nothing you can do or say
will make your words
seem true, or even real.

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Words

Words are empty shells –
worthless to describe a world
that falls through our hands
like grains of sand.

If you try to define
your stars and how you see them shine
your words will kill the wonder
and leave emptiness behind.

So say no more to me –
no more empty words –
much more can be contained
in vision, touch and scent.

Speak not – silence heals
words cause numbness – nothing else
avoid word’s lure and sense
the silence – how it mends.

(written when I was 18)

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Poet vs. Human

I am a 7-year-old poet,
and a 26-year-old human
but often it feels as if
the poet
has the more experience,
the more to say
and the better ways to say it
whereas the human
lags so far behind
she barely understands
the poet’s way of thinking.

She is merely the medium
from time to time
and an ambivalent one
torn between the poetry
and other pursuits.

But the poet is stronger
and speaks more convincingly
and keeps dragging her back –

if nothing else works
waking her in her sleep
with nightmares
of endless books
demanding to be written;

making her fear
that if she doesn’t write the stories now
she might never get to
and they would disappear.

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I Trust In the Poet

I trust in the poet
to be able to phrase
all that I wish to say
and I trust her to do it –

I trust her to scatter
the fog with her words,
to comfort and heal all
the bruises and hurts –

I charge her: be honest,
be brave and direct
whenever I fail
myself in that respect,

be sad or be angry –
all that I don’t show –
so that it has an outlet
and won’t fester in me –

be all and say all
that you know I would like to!
I trust in the poet
to carry it through.

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If I Lack Words, I Must Make Them

There… there…
no, I failed to grasp it again
but I was close this time…
That word just keeps eluding me…
I have it… I have had it… I had it…
It’s gone…
I speak the things out loud
inside my head
I would have liked to have said
out loud
but even then that word
eludes me…
What was it now again?

I lack that word to describe myself
and what I am…
I have a handful of clichés
and even they don’t even
approximate
what I am…
What am I?
Something indescribable
apparently…

I am a finger hovering over a keyboard for a
missing key…

I am a note lingering in the air after the music has ended…
I am the anticipation before the music has started to play…

I am a synthesis – but of what? Of past and
future making present? Of art and technology making a future I’m not sure I even wish to live in? But would I rather live in the past?

Where in the world do I belong? In the physical world where I am technically situated I might as well not exist, but I cannot really exist in the
virtual world I inhabit. My words come out as nothing but the clatter of a keyboard. As if I was only speaking to myself. I look up and around and think that I might as well be.

But I chose this for myself didn’t I? How can I complain that I am lonely and that nobody understands me when I chose this? I had alternatives. They were worse. I chose this. I chose the
keyboard. I chose the clatter. I chose the silence. Because the price of speaking is so damn high.
I chose the computer over the people. Because the computer is logical and follows instructions. It understands the code I write. Humans cannot be relied upon to understand the words I say. They do not always. They do not – mostly. But the
computer I can talk to. And it doesn’t suddenly decide that it would rather have its software
written by someone more attractive or less needy or less socially awkward or less quiet. It just
accepts me. It’s just there when I need it. And I never have to struggle to express myself to it like I have to when around people.
That was my choice. But it was never an easy one.

But maybe it doesn’t all have to be as black and white as I have made it out to be. Maybe I can combine everything. Maybe I can speak to people through the computer. For lack of better options. And maybe they would actually hear me.

If I lack words I must make them. I must re-program the language to fit me if it doesn’t. And it doesn’t. I must reshape my language in my own image and hope that somebody will understand what I mean anyway.