2 words, a thousand stories,
Bubbling up like molten, suppressed lava,
Scorching, simmering gathering strength and voice.
And there are those silent voices too
Stifling their Me Toos in shame, discomfort and the need to not let the beast out.
A thousand voices, as many tales
Across boundaries, ages, class, and creed
The beast preys.
On innocence who can’t yet put a name to the discomfort
On teens struggling to isolate the incident from sense of self and in failing, living with scarred psyches,
On women, choosing to shrink their bodies into balls of armor
In jostling buses, trains, elevators,
And lowering their gaze, turning away to severe eye contact of salivating, goading beasts,
Homes are not cocoons, families not a stamp of safety,
The beast stalks wherever there are vulnerability and ease,
It is sly and cunning, and will not desist,
Neither garments that cover nor education and careers that empower provides reprieve.
The beast stalks in boardrooms and drawing rooms with equal stealth.
Leaving visible and invisible scars, drawing blood
Some scars burn in the light of day
Some fester and glow in the dark
Corroding souls, tainting minds, defiling bodies.
Eating into dreams, digging into hearts
Leaving gaping black holes in it’s trail.
Raise your voice, build your strength,
Stand next to those who can’t.
Emote, empathize, lend credence,
Support, listen, act, mobilize.
Remove the shame, tear down the stigma.
And above all care.
Care to look deep into those you know and into unknown eyes,
For every story told, there are a hundred stifled silent cries of Me Too
For every past trauma recalled, tens are being perpetrated each day.
The poem first appeared on author’s facebook page. We have republished it with permission.
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