Rather than do another structured poem, I decided to go with a free-verse poem. Often my poems become something ‘observational’ and lacking personal touches, experiences, or emotions. This one started out the same as so many other did. Rather dull. But I rewrote it and rewrote it until it became something that spoke about more than just something I saw, but rather something I could relate to.
Here it is:
Gods, kings, heroes, athletes
Imagined, revered, hopeful, watched
Young boys learn that, to be a man,
what matters is what you do, not who you are.
We worship great men, and loathe the weak.
We long for immortality and power.
We join sports teams, we learn to brag,
we learn there are winners and losers,
what losing feels like, what shame is.
We long to be recognized and popular.
We grow up, start a career, and we
continue our games, this time with money,
and we are left wanting, and suffer with envy.
We long to be free and happy.
No longer do we dream of our own immortality,
but concede to the reality that we can only truly
live on in the memory of others.
Family, friends, children, strangers
Lived, shared, loved, touched