Words

They tell me, they're just words, they don't matter
Just syllables off the cuff, noises we make at one another
Something you have anyway to have to get to live with
It's up to you, they tell me, how to take what is said
Whether the words go deep or bounce off

Gay, faggot, tranny, bitch, queer, pervert, pussy, dyke, cunt, deviant
Just words, only words

And I don't know that I dispute them, except their implications
That I am less of a person, less worthwhile, less able, less deserving
I really don't care - it is a learned skill, a component of life
Enduring what you cannot otherwise change
Understanding the limits of your ability to reach other people

Hateful, harmful, hurtful, demeaning, degrading, offensive, agonizing
Just words, only words

I am harmed not by the words but by the intent behind them
I live doing none harm, saying none harm, thinking none harm
Yet others do these things to me without my consent
They violate me in ways I cannot comprehend a reason for
To take such time and effort to take revenge on me for what I have never done

Justice, honor, honesty, charity, dignity, respect, acceptance, love
Just words, only words

Words can make a difference in a life most profound and irresistible
They can take you to the summit of man's achievements and potential
They can drag you to the pit of your own worst fears and doubts
I fear for these who slander me, who fear me, who despise me
For their demons are unreal to me, their anger uncomprehended.

Insanity, cruelty, violence, brutality, envy, evil, loss
Just some more words, only a few words

My heart bleeds for those who know only such fears and hatreds
To be condemned to ruthless feelings and preemptive assaults
Justifying a life spent in minimizing the pain in ones own heart
By needless condemnation, heedless conformance to antique ideas
What an empty tribute to a terrible wasted existence.

Come hold me in the darkness, my darling,
Without you am I so utterly alone.

2011

creative commons