Monthly Archives: January 2015

“Child of the World”

~Esther Mitchell, 2001~

I was born a child of the world,
Knowing no borders,
No boundaries,
No race, religion, or creed.

I was born a child of the world,
Daughter of the Earth,
Of the Sky, of the Sea, of the Flame,
Sister to all creatures.

I was born a child of the world,
I know none of the boundaries,
You place on hearts, minds and souls.

I was born a child of the world,
I don’t know your hate,
I know only encompassing love.
I mourn for the bloodshed,
I mourn for the pain,
I weep on this ground,
That bears your hate’s stain.

I was born a child of the world,
And I’ve travelled it over, in body and dream,
I know the faces of all its peoples,
I embrace them all just the same.

There is no one beneath me,
No one placed above,
I am a child of the world,
And my message is only love.

globe

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“Political Malpractice”

~Esther Mitchell, 2014~

While corporations and insurance companies,
Battle it out to see who can line more pockets,
Reorganize themselves out of the truth, out of the blame,
I lay ripped to pieces by words like “policy”, “deductible”, and “network.”
While my body tears itself apart from the inside out,
And my mind trips over itself like a landmine,
Buried around every corner with ghosts,
Someone with a pen instead of a stethoscope,
A calculator instead of a microscope,
Sifts through the ashes of my life,
Weighs the ashes, and tells me what I’m worth.
I sit here, unable to afford the help that would save my life,
Defend my sanity,
Bring me relief,
Because some rich old man,
Hides behind association with false gods,
Prays at an altar of greed disguised as benevolence,
In a white-washed marble temple of hypocrisy.
I am not a statistic,
Not yet,
But I’m liable to become one,
Because that’s what happens,
To the legions of the invisible ill,
When what’s needed to heal us, to keep us well,
is determined not by a lab coat or scrubs,
but by a fat cat in a three-piece suit.

medmoney

“Compassion”

~Esther Mitchell, 2011~

I feel the stares of disdain,

The sneers and whispers you think so hidden,

Because you’ve never experienced my pain,

Or tried to understand my fear.

I’m barred from normal life,

And you’ve walled me from inclusion,

You’ve wounded me with your comments,

And forced me into despairing seclusion.

I have no choice in this pain I suffer,

I never got to decide,

It arrived with me in this world, this life,

And it’s eating me from the inside.

You might not like the inconvenience,

But it’s ten times worse for me,

For what you see as a nuisance,

Is steadily killing me.

So try a little compassion,

And quit burying your head in the sand,

Because I’m not the only ill person,

Whose presence you’ll ever have to withstand.

Purple Ribbon

“Against the Tide”

~Esther Mitchell, 2011~

You laugh at the jokes,
You pass them around,
You make comments,
That run others into the ground.

You ridicule as choices,
Things they had no choice about,
You fill their world with hateful thoughts,
And words that make them, about life, doubt.

You take away their freedom,
Before it’s even given,
And tell them that they’re wrong or evil,
For the way that they see living.

But what if he was your son?
What if she was your daughter?
Would you stand by,
While your own child’s soul was slaughtered?

The only way to fight the hate,
Is to take a look inside,
And with each day, every person,
Change ourselves, to change the tide.

Before you speak,
Before you harm,
Ask yourself,
If against your own child, your own self, you’ve raised the alarm.

Pride Rainbow

“Let It Go”

~Esther Mitchell, 2014~

You told me today,
That I just need to calm down,
That it’s not that bad,
That I should just let it go.
I smiled, and nodded, and walked away.
But what I wanted to ask you,
Was if you’d seen the leash I’m holding,
The door I’ve barricaded with my body,
To save you from the demons that push against the other side,
If I let go of this leash,
I unleash something I cannot control,
Its ravenous appetite never satisfied,
Until it pulls the last precious drop of my blood, of life,
From the hollow shell of my soul,
If I step away from the door,
Peel my body from this lock,
Rest my vigilance for even a breath,
I unleash a hell I cannot push back again,
I am Pandora before the box,
Untempted, because I already know the pestilence inside,
There isn’t any hope in my box,
My only hope rests in keeping it firmly closed,
And so I made my body the only key,
My throat sewn shut around the magic words,
That I could keep the demons from escaping.
You tell me I should pray about it,
But there’s no prayer that stays this battle,
No God capable of turning back this horde,
Your God abandoned me when this Hell was created,
My pleas echoed off your god’s deaf ears like bullets off Kevlar,
Until I was deafened to the sound of prayer,
Each word from your lips an artillery round,
Blowing open more places for the demons to come in,
More hollows where the words whispered in the night,
Until they were all I could hear, telling me to take the pills,
To use the knife,
To go back to the beginning, to fill my lungs with the water,
As they were that day.
You tell me to think positive,
That this, too, shall pass.
While you’re drowning me in your mantras,
You know nothing of what I face.
I am neither positively or negatively charged.
I am a lightning bolt,
A pounding pulse of electricity that lights up the night,
Fills the sky, takes it over, burns the ground where I walk,
And I am the night, the humming darkness before a storm,
The momentary tingle on your scalp, your tongue,
Just before my fire splits the sky.
I learned this when my world split in two,
Gained the ability to be invisible,
When it became too difficult for you to see me,
Charged the cloak of my own night,
With enough electricity to light the world,
Because the only way to drive my demons back,
Was to be something they feared more than I feared them.
I am the Gates of Babylon,
The portals through which heroes prostrate to pass,
My voice the guardian of secrets that bring kings to their knees,
My body a sacrament defiled to the roar of waves that sink kingdoms and empires.
Do not dare to tell me who, or what, shall pass through me,
Because you do not know the canals carved into my face,
By the rivers of tears you never saw, never stemmed.
You have not navigated the River Styx within my soul,
The murky water none can cross without my permission,
My tongue the ferryman, hand outstretched.
You haven’t the coin to unlock my secrets,
Because you don’t know what it means,
To cut out your own tongue,
To spare others from the demons who howl,
On the other side of my abyss.
You told me today,
To let it go, to just move on,
Because you have no idea,
The monsters I keep at bay.

Flames

“Tears”

~Esther Mitchell, 2011~

I cry myself to sleep at night,
tears muffled by my pillow;
I fear the sleep in which I once found solace,
Afraid I might not wake tomorrow.

I cry myself awake each morning,
Never sure if it’s relief, or pain;
I bury all I feel behind a mask,
Knowing others don’t want reminders of my pain.

Yet, tears are my constant companion,
though never what gets me through the day;
Only hope and belief that there’s a reason,
Give me the strength to fight, to stay.

When you mock or berate me,
for the pain and fear with which I live,
You take away my hope,
and demand so much more than I can give.

Don’t judge what you don’t understand,
Or think all’s well just because I don’t let you see;
Behind this mask pain and fear bid me to wear,
You’ll find there’s so much more I want to be.

POET’S NOTE:
There are thousands of people living with what are known as Invisible Diseases – Diseases that rob them of the daily life functions most people take for granted. Yet, rather than receiving the compassion directed toward people whose illnesses and disabilities are more obvious, people suffering from Invisible Diseases are more often ridiculed, looked down on, talked down to, or treated deplorably because they don’t “look sick.”

As someone who suffers from an Invisible Disease, I have first-hand experience with this treatment, and it’s become part of my mission in life to spread awareness about Invisible Disease and learning to understand others, rather than just judging on what you see.

“Broken Angel”

~Esther Mitchell, 2014~

I rushed to your aid,
Stood at your back,
Avenging angel against the hordes.
I’ve trod Hell for you,
I’ve churned up fields full of mines,
And poured my blood on land that still screams for more,
All in your name,
Without hesitation,
No pause for my health, my blood, my life.

I’ve come to you in your darkest night,
Sat beside your sickbed,
Bathed your skin of the sweat of illnesses – both body and spirit,
I’ve knelt by your side,
Blessed the ground you tread,
Soothed your fears,
With a hand upon your head.
I’ve taken your pain,
Worn it as my own,
Offered you, without request or reward,
Peace, love, honesty, and safe haven.

Now I lay torn and battered,
A fluttering specter in the night,
And I’m forced to come crawling to you,
Begging for your aid,
To which you turn a blind eye, a deaf ear,
You make excuses,
For why it’s too difficult for you to help,
How there’s nothing you can do.
I never turned you away,
I gave everything I had to give.
But it’s too difficult for you,
When just one moment could help me live?

angel