Home > poem, Poetry, Uncategorized > The Devil Whispers

The Devil Whispers

You start by taking—
small acts:
a shoelace, a ring,
a tiny belt. When the crying
begins, steel yourself
against feeling—
your orders are what they are,
and what happens
if you say no? Chaos,
anarchy, danger.
No, do not look into the eyes
of children, breaking
and broken, brown
and full of grief,
do as you are told,
follow the law
of the lawless—
do not waiver,
do not bend.

Begin then by building the wall
in your heart, brick by brick,
fill up the emptiness
with more hollow,
let what’s missing
become a solid thing:
soul, trickled down to nothing,
a riverbed gone empty,
a well dried up—
this is your legacy.

You start by taking,
until you see what you’ve lost,
what you have stolen,
what blood you have spilled
in the form of tears,
putting miles between
a child and her mother,
the unquantifiable distance
of grief far, far worse—
a wound so deep
that it has no measure,
and you have done this
and lived with it,
looked at your face
in the mirror and smiled,
laughed with your own children,
held them close,
sat at the kitchen table
with your own father,
playing cards,
as if there are no consequences
for your quick hands,
your loyalty
to the disloyal—
thank you.

You have done my work,
called it good,
labeled it just. God
may have created the world
in seven days,
but look at the heartbreak now,
and see what we have destroyed
isn’t it beautiful?

Categories: poem, Poetry, Uncategorized
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