The Talk

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(Giovenna Sipalay/Flickr)

On the days dedicated to casting a light
onto those living in debilitating darkness,
we have chosen to shine it onto ourselves
and while we bask in a thawing glow,
those who need it the most,
go another eternity without light.

It is in this darkness that the
skeletal remains of human beings
drag themselves from wall to wall
in an unending frenzy, and harmless
monsters cower into corners,
afraid of the voices of apparitions
and dancing shadows.
Dull shapes are chained to the ground
under their feet, with transparent shackles,
weighing a hundred pounds each,
and are accompanied by hysterical clowns
mocking their troubling defeat.
Amongst this darkness
the unwanted hide,
the unheard whisper.

In a world that has convinced us of
the importance of listening,
we forget that our soundtrack
does, in fact, not have to be
our own voices on repeat,
telling fabricated truths
and overextended memoirs
of a life we cannot appreciate.

In a society that has witnessed
children swallow handfuls of pills;
mothers plunge from bridges;
fathers put rifles to their mouths;
we allow the echoes of their dying
words to be forgotten amongst the
desire to be the sole tragic hero,
in a story not our own.

If another human being, rendered
blind after so long in the darkness,
falls victim to mental illness…
Do they make a sound?
Or do they fade into thin air,
as if never here at all?