The available data says that this effort dates from March 2017, but it seems longer ago than that.
I've just now, sitting here over coffee, changed and expanded the ending.
To Myself 20 Years Ago
What warped you,
what closed your heart,
what snuffed out the dim wick
of your charity?
What soured your soul,
made you a partisan, a rigorist ---
what poisoned your affections?
You tried to make yourself
impervious to hurt.
You wanted to be left alone,
a diabolic eremite
in a cold cloister of self.
You wanted to be perfect,
with a quick and definite answer
slamming the door on every holy doubt,
with a ready-made label for everyone
who didn't see things as you did,
with a handful of thorns as a bouquet of gratitude
for every kindness that came your way.
You thought you had it all sorted.
You thought you had your act together.
You listened to harsh noises, shrill voices,
assassins of serenity.
You embodied the ugliness of always being right.
Your ruthless logic
cut through friends, made enemies;
your buoyancy and lightness of spirit
lay dead at the side of the road.
There must have been
some trace amount of human warmth
or else you would not have survived,
retained those few loyal friends
through all the insanity.
Thank Heaven, thank Mercy, thank Love,
that you will someday learn to listen,
learn to receive life on life's terms
and people on people's terms.
Thank the Light
which overthrows the darkness
and brings a new day
to a sweet and painful birth.
Poetry by Thomas DeFreitas
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Written on 2019-02-02 at 07:56
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