Squinting Shadows (Poem)

eidy-bambang-sunaryo-517370-unsplashSquinting Shadows

We clench our lights in closed palms,
afraid to show our colors—
afraid we’ll shine too bright—
so we cling so tight,
to our gray cloaks—
our first birthday gifts.

The world wants to mold—
not teach—
drawing you into the dark
where only your shadow
—your simplified silhouette—
conform, it says,
play your part, it says,
your role was cast by
before you were born.

So let out your light—
show your flames
and wash the shadows away
from the others like you
—and cast the world in color.

Make the shade-sowers
shield their eyes.

If we all shine bright,
if you shine bright,
if I shine bright

perhaps they’ll go blind.


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