Use your words, they said
When I wanted to hit the girl who stole my teddy bear
And so I learned the language of ice and hail
I learned to calligraph with the blood of my victims
For words can never hurt.
Explain yourself, they said
So I translated the mango-flavored music in my heart into words they could comprehend
It was like chopping the heads off teddy bears
The room ended up strewn with cotton and loose threads.
Shut up, they said
So my operculum I locked against the pounding waves of adolescence
Every tide sounded the same
I forgot how to decode the subtleties of language.
Be gentle, you said
With your eyes, for I was deafened by the rock and roll of war
I didn’t think that I could make your blood run
Hot with only the words I’d been taught.
And since I couldn’t hear the acid in my voice
You silently became a glacial peak
A wordless creature bathed in nameless wind
And now I have no one to talk to
And I almost wish I had used my eyes, my ears, my hands, my heart
Anything but my words.
Image credits in order of appearance:
By Emmanuel-Adolphe Midy (French, 1797-1874) (Walters Art Museum: Home page Info about artwork) [Public domain or Public domain], via Wikimedia Commons
“La Discrétion 1820s” by Claude-Marie Dubufe – http://www.lot-tissimo.net/. Licensed under Public Domain via Wikimedia Commons – https://commons.wikimedia.org/wiki/File:La_Discr%C3%A9tion_1820s.jpg#/media/File:La_Discr%C3%A9tion_1820s.jpg