Simply put, I cannot fathom
the fortitude needed to fight
for causes that matter more
than what I fight for: freedom
to speak my mind regardless
of politics, absent pretense.

Like yesterday, when the cat
teased our Beagle by lounging,
legs stretched out over the quilt
on the back of the sofa,
within a foot of the sliding door.
She was a mean tease, and I just watched.

Or this morning, as I entered
the office and no one sat complaining
about the elected stewards of our lives,
about their failure of forethought,
about the cost of their concerns.
My silence shattered my senses.

This weight is not the weight
of matter. These trials, trite
or troubling, can compare not
to the tirades of poverty,
abandon, or hate. Yet I feel
buried beneath them.

All conflict sits incongruously
in the back pocket of my jeans;
the desire to speak stifled
by some fear demon, who perches
like a medieval dragon and whispers,
“Cats are just that way, get over it.”



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