You Tell Me

 

How dare you tell me to be who I am

But chide me when I try

 

Ask how I am

Robotic response every time:

Good how are you

 

Who am I

 

An object

On the production line of education

Of this system

Grade point average stamped to my forehead

Résumé stapled to my side

 

Test me before you sell me

Ring out my competence

 

Brand me if I fit your criteria

Myriad items

Do we please you

 

Did you probe the parts inside of me

Do you even know if I’m still breathing

 

No use to you if I’m dead

Defective item

Return to sender

 

Who am I

 

Sample of a failed experiment

 

I am monsoon worry

Trying to please you

Never myself

Why would I please myself

Not even sure how I would

 

Lost myself along the way

Your way

Do you see that I’m trying

 

Can’t you see that I’m trying

 

Who am I

 

Moonshine sadness

 

Under my blazer

That I wear to look sharp for you

As sharp as my knife

Used to craft a bracelet of blood

You see

I am a jeweler too

Will you buy me now

Am I the opulence you desire

Am I enough

 

Dream Catcher

Can’t ensnare this nightmare

 

Wax drip of hope

Keeping me above the ground

 

Teacher asked for an essay

Of who we are

I wrote my name

That’s all

That’s all I know

 

The art of getting by

Fabrication for the letter “A”

 

“A” is for acting

 

My thoughts or yours

Differentiate

 

Repression of spirit

Repression of the being

 

Alteration

Tailor me as you wish

 

 

External expectations

Internal pressure

Self-made shackles of criticism

 

Not enough for this

Culpable society

 

But I’m part of the system

I am selfish too

 

I yearn to be a renegade

But continue to bow

To the way things are

 

I don’t know who I am

 

Can’t you see that I’m trying

 

I don’t know who I am…

 

Can you tell me

This poem is about: 
Me
My community
My country
Our world

Comments

Need to talk?

If you ever need help or support, we trust CrisisTextline.org for people dealing with depression. Text HOME to 741741