fear

words sit

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words sit

at the tip of my tongue

the force behind them so great

they could level a forest of giant oaks

 

words of

passion

friendship

&

love

 

but an even greater force holds them in

FEAR

a gatekeeper whose iron

keeps even the strongest of poets at bay

 

the words swirl in my head

creating a storm of harsh thunder and lightning

thrashing and crashing against an invisible barrier

 

breaking it down

 

but though the words may make sense on paper

they flow harsh like the river

cutting and weaving through land

but also the transporter of all things necessary

 

love at long last

has broken free

I am me.

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I am me.

 

You are you.

 

But she is her

and he is him.

 

One word:

 

Conformity.

 

The word weighs down on those around it.

Crushing every ounce of their individuality

until it has been replaced by a new word:

 

 

Fear of being different.

Fear of failure.

Fear of being looked down upon.

 

A young girl sits in the back of the room.

Ahead of her are girls who have been molded into one:

curled hair,

bright shirts,

expensive jeans,

and Nikes.

A boy sits at the park

and watches as every other boy his age is asked to play basketball.

He looks at his cheap white sneakers and knows he’s an outcast.

He has not conformed

but he wants to.

 

Three words:

 

Be. An. Individual.

 

Be who you are.

Not the person the world wants you to be.

I am my own person

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I am my own person

(mostly) unhindered by the world in which I live

a web of tangled strings tug at my heart

telling me

who

what

when

where

and

why

but never asking

this poison seeps through the vessels and veins in my body

in an attempt to affect and effect

the person I (have become) am

those who tell rather than ask are no longer their own person

their lives hindered by the world about them

crushed by a society that tries to same

(or shame)

everyone

into one unified person

don’t be afraid to ask

and don’t be afraid to be the person you were meant to be

the person you are

yourself

they show our deepest fears

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they show our deepest fears

even when we do everything we can to hide them

but with one look

an experienced eye can feel our fear

 

like the girl sitting alone on a dingy bus

the girl who refuses to make eye contact

with those trying to help

 

they show our happiness

the smallest glimmer giving it away

it can be seen with the quickest of glances

igniting the same feeling in others

 

like the couple you see holding hands on the beach

the soft sand and shimmering sun

only accentuating how they feel in that moment

 

they show our compassion

at the moments we choose to open our souls

so that others can see our depth

and a warmth gravitates to all that seek it

 

like the friend who never left your side

in a moment of weakness

and remains there to this day

 

they tell our stories

and the stories of those around us

yet we are afraid of exposing ourselves

we divert our attention away at the last moment

not willing to allow others across a barrier

a barrier that blocks the way to a piece of ourselves

we don’t want to share

but a piece of ourselves that is most important

 

they are powerful

because they hold our secrets out for the world to see

and no two persons are the same

 

eyes

it’s there

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it’s there

itching at our core

waning our strength

slowly

like the second hand

ticking on a clock

mesmerizing us

 

fear

 

fear of failure

 

fear of the unknown

 

fear of never being good enough

 

fear of growing old

or not growing old

 

fear of death

 

fear of being criticized

 

fear of proving people wrong

or of proving people right

 

fear of losing control

 

fear

 

constantly surrounds us

swirling around us high above our heads

all the way to the ground

blacks

purples

blues

or the brightest shade of red

you’ve ever seen