It occurred to me earlier that I am some sort of metaphorical feather and don’t quite know it. My view changes with the winds. It only makes sense.
A few years ago I liked boys. They intrigued me like an orbiting world could, just out of reach and just beyond my concrete familiarity. It was nice to have them like me; nice to have them chase me. I kicked one in a…fragile spot on the playground. This was all normal.
Then I began to wonder. Reflect on things and suppressed feelings. Feelings, perhaps, for the girl in fifth grade music class that would laugh (this acoustically beautiful laugh, the instruments might’ve gotten jealous) at the things I said and would go out of her way to be with me, telling me how much she liked being around me. She leaned over me as I showed her my song on the piano; she clasped my arm lightly in a swimming pool as she led me through it, dripping with water and giddiness.
Then as the years passed, there were more of them. Different girls. I began to notice them frequently and how I felt about the way this one smiles at me, how this one forms words with her staggering lips, the lines on this one’s neck as she throws her head back to laugh, the warmth that rises in me as this one put her arm around my person in a genuine hug. And these girls trusted me, as they would trust the pillow that they lay their heads on at night. I didn’t know what to feel about this. And I thought maybe feeling was betraying, so I chose not to acknowledge the feeling.
Now boys still have my attention. And girls, too. I’m not sure about anything, and in this respect, nothing has changed. I avoid labels like the plague and would like to say that I am brave and strong and fight to breed tolerance in the people around, but I just let the anger at its absence fester in me until I forget about it and concentrate on friends or poetry or the petty day-to-day things like my own hunger or sleep deprivation or headaches.
I am not a martyr. I write about them.
I can’t know what I want until I know who I am. And until then all I’ve got is this pencil and notebook and guitar and an open-mind that lets the troubles of the world into my being like a nasty draft through a back door.
And of course this stupid, undying love for humanity.
With these things I float around like the feather I am,
from feeling to feeling, person to person.
Ill-equipped, it is impossible not to fear the winds of the future.