What You Are Asking

You are asking me
not to wince when I am cut.
You are asking me 
not to curse in blinding pain.
You demand of me
the bow and scrape of etiquette
as I am blasted.
You suggest that this genocide
should be politely borne — no.

No, because

sometimes hope
is a broken storefront,
a glass storm, a fire
in a public street. 

No, because

sometimes survival
is strongest
when it is taken,
not requested.

No, because

asking me to fold my hands
and wait to die,

shunting me
to one side
instead of facing me directly
as I have always faced your knives,

patting my head
and sweetly speaking
that poison suggestion
that I compromise
in the face of an apocalypse 
that has been tailored for me alone,

are not things to be borne politely.

No, because
you cannot make me die
unnoticed.  No, because
if you kill me off,
at the very least
my loud extinction
will echo in your ears forever
and you will never

know peace 
again.

About Tony Brown

A poet with a history in slam, lots of publications; my personal poetry and a little bit of daily life and opinions. Read the page called "About..." for the details. View all posts by Tony Brown

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