People ask why I'm terrified of snakes, never touching them,
Why I will never be too close to them, so I tell them why.
“Stay away from the snake! It’ll bite you!”
She said as long as I can remember.
“The snake is dangerous and will hurt you,
Don't touch it, look at it, or think of it.”
"Yes mother" I say. Why stay away though?
It doesn’t seem so bad, even kind of fun.
My best friend has a snake, so why can’t I?
Temptation overcomes me, I sneak off.
Ignoring my mother’s often cried pleas,
I hold my friend's snake, stroke its scaly skin.
It’s cold body coils around my wrist,
Gliding up my arm, a cool sensation,
Reaching my neck, now too close for comfort,
Scared, I yell for my friend: she doesn’t come.
Frantic, I boldly yank at its body,
The snake finally releasing its grip.
It glides away, but not before it bites,
Leaving a scar, a reminder of him.
I will never touch or trust snakes again,
Never will give them a to chance hurt me.
My friends respond: “But one bad experience should not stop you,
Prevent you from enjoying the company of other snakes!”
“There will always be dangerous ones, stay away from those kind,
But do not label all of them because of one nasty time”.
"You should take a little bit of the responsibility,
After all, you should have known better than to play with that snake".
"Well, what did you seriously expect it to do to you?
It's in their nature, you can't hold him accountable for it."
"You were alone with the snake and allowed it to be on you,
Do you not think that you were sort of asking for disaster?"
"People get bit all the time and are okay being near them!
Just get back on the saddle, try just once more, and let it go".
They hear my story, they hear my experience, they hear me.
But they don't hear the pain in my voice, don't hear my silent screams.
Why does no one understand me, why can no one understand?
They hear my story, my pain, and yet, somehow do not hear me.
Perhaps they are correct, I just need to forgive and forget.
However, they have never experienced its painful bite.