So, I hear you say, “I heard a rumor…”

Syllables capable of planting problems were people once were

Corrupting, corrosive... killing.

But they can only take root if you’re willing

To continue watering it with a whisper,

But still, the liquid you give is only bitter.

When you know that you can be better,

And that Rumor can only corrupt if you let her.


Quietly, “I heard a rumor…”

Something I hear more and more

A phrase so deadly it can kill,

I have seen that it can and will.

So the knowledge must be taught,

That quiet murmurs can be like gunshots.

I know too well that whispers, murmurs, mutters.

Seemingly simple and scarless can form cutters

Without the constant approval needed, they starve 

Leaving scars on their heart deeper than the ones they carve.


“I heard a rumor that he was drinking.”

“Oh God, what was he thinking?”

“Isn’t he supposed to be the good kid?”

So then you sell your soul to the highest bid,

Since your reputation is torn to an unrecognizable shred.

What’s the point of even getting out of your bed?


“I heard a rumor that she slept with a senior.”

“What? How? Why would anyone ever love her?”

“I always knew she would be a slut.”

Only she felt how deep their lies cut.

She stays awake every night weeping,

While the ones who hurt her are peacefully sleeping.

What made you think that? How is this fair?

Was it her clothes? Her words? Her hair?

And did you ever once, think to ask for her side?

No, you let the rumors spread throughout and reside.


“I heard a rumor that he tried to kill himself.”

But did you ever once offer your help?

When he was begging for some sort of validation,

You cast him away with no consideration.

How can you live with the poison you spread,

With the words that made him not feel safe in his own head?

You watched him fold like a paper plane,

Everything he did to stay aloft in vain.

His plane falling to the ground,

All his sanity becoming unwound.

You crushed his wings, you bent his nose

But still all you do is spread your slanderous prose.


“I heard a rumor that she cheated on her boyfriend.”

The words spread like fire, burning up who you called your friend.

Her credibility balanced on a wire,

All you do is push it higher.

So when it all comes crashing down,

No remnant of the girl before will be found.

But you don’t worry, you don’t care,

As long as it’s not you standing there.


“I heard a rumor that she’s pregnant.”

If only you knew how much she regrets it.

She’s full of self-hate, who knew that saying yes to that movie,

Would lead to the night ending with a Coca-Cola roofie.

But she can’t tell you that, if she did, would you even listen?

Because it’s a he-said-she-said situation.

And you know when it comes down to the nitty-gritty

People’s decisions are not based on the one who deserves pity.

They let the accusations and defenses fester and grow.

In the end they will always pick the person who they best know.


Your whispers, your lies, your words,

You give Rumor the power to use hers,

As we all know she pulls no punches,

You’ll be lucky if you’re just left on crutches.

Because the simple sentences said out-loud,

The ones that ripple through the crowd,

Always cut to the core,

Of the ones, they were made for.

But you never once considered the consequences of what you do.

It’s truly sad knowing, it would all be different if it was you.


Poetry Slam: 
This poem is about: 
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Our world
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