home | archives | bio | stories | poetry | links | guestbook | message board
previous | poetry index | next

Who Am I Kidding?


There was a time that it never seemed to matter much –
No – that’s not true –
There was a time I deceived myself into thinking that it didn’t matter much –
A time when I tried to be what everyone wanted me to be:
Successful, wealthy, independent, helpful, knowledgeable –

How did I allow myself to lose everything I stood for…everything I wanted?
When did I give up and give in?
Where did I go to be so far from reality?
Who was I kidding?

Maybe it was all me, afraid to face reality, afraid to face rejection, afraid to face loss and pain and emptiness.
Maybe I realized that I couldn’t be what I wanted, couldn’t be where I wanted, couldn’t have what I needed.
Maybe I thought I could have my reality if I lived up to everyone else’s first.
Maybe I was just a fool.

Now reality is here and I can’t turn away. I can’t hide; can’t run fast enough or far enough.
All the pain and loss, all of the wrong choices, all of the missed opportunities, all of the loneliness –

My reality envelops me, washes through every pore, and flows through me with more strength than my blood.
Pain, anger, fear, and longing have become so constant and omnipresent that I can no longer feel them individually or feel any other emotions at all.
My reality pulls me down into that same abyss I have feared my whole life,
But I still retain a faint glimmer of hope (fool that I am) –

Truth, passion, joy, bonding, caring – love –
It seems so simple. Shouldn’t these things come to everyone?
Why for others and not for me?
How can I live without the only things that really matter?
Who am I kidding?


previous | poetry index | next
home | archives | bio | stories | poetry | links
| guestbook | message board

Who Am I Kidding?, by Paul Cales, © 1999