Mar 18

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Scars and Shadows

Everyone has scars
Everyone carries rocks in their knapsack
Little injuries that they’ve picked up along the way
Or terrible wounds from battles they waged alone


Photographer: Karsten Kneese

Brother, I know you

We started as innocents
Pure, unblemished, trusting
But none of us make it far
It is our fate as mankind
To struggle and bleed
Even if we win every fight
(Which almost never happens)
We bear the fears and learned defenses
The mental anguish and regrets
Our hearts never go unbroken
And some will have to endure multiple fractures

Sister, I feel you

We act as though there’s nothing wrong
That we’re “well-adjusted”
That we’re strong enough, we’re okay
When inwardly we’re shaking, screaming
Slowly bleeding to death internally
From all the cuts and tears
From where we’ve rent our flesh asunder
Trying to claw out the painful parts
Hiding it in the darkness
So no one will see you weep
Because it looks like everyone else is fine…
“What’s wrong with me?” we ask

Mother, I see you

It is a terrible lie we perpetuate
Telling ourselves we’re sick
That something is bad and wrong about us
When it is what we have survived
That makes us who and what we are
And we do each other disservice
To tell ourselves this untruth
Because we persuade ourselves so completely
That we convince everyone else it’s true
Which makes them believe that THEY are unwell
And perpetuates the madness

Father, I hear you

We build up walls to protect ourselves
From ourselves, and each other
We tell ourselves lies and convince the world
So that they tell themselves the same lies
Spreading like a plague
And soon we trust no one
Hiding our secrets, buried deep
Where they fester and breed vermin
Until they burst loose and flood the room
With fury and fear and addiction


Look me in the eyes
And know me
Tear down your walls, as I have mine
And behold the naked, scarred truth
In all its hideous beauty
The keloids of lessons learned
Embrace these faults
Drag them into the light
Uncover this mockery of ourselves

Look at me

And know that I have flaws, just like you
That I have fears, just like you
That I seethe and froth in bitterness
And hate and seek vengeance, like you
And, like you, I hope and love and laugh
I am vulnerable, I have weaknesses
I am nothing more than what I am
And nothing less
Look at me
I have embraced my Shadow
Reconciled my humanity
And you, too, can be free

Look at me

Accept me or reject me
It will not change me
Tear down your wall
And let yourself out
For I will let you in.

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