I Am Afraid


A layered poem about the state of life and the world.

Photo by Violinka

I am afraid.

I’m afraid that a war is soon coming.
I’m afraid that it’s already here.
I’m afraid that there’s no use in running.
I’m afraid that I’m frozen by fear.

I’m afraid for the lives of my loved ones.
I’m afraid for my own life, as well.
I’m afraid of the sound of these war drums.
I’m afraid we’re all going to Hell.

I’m afraid that the only peace calls that I hear
Come from those who don’t mean it at all;
That those who divide us and govern by fear
Will still end up on top of it all.

I’m afraid of my enemies, also my friends,
But the middle I fear more than all.
As Lin-Manuel said: if you, in the end,
Stand for nothing, for what will you fall?

I’m afraid that too many are stubbornly blind
To all plights they believe not their own.
I’m afraid that it will be too late when they find
The true horror of what they condone.

I’m afraid it’s too easy to turn a deaf ear
To the sad, desperate pleadings for aid.
The voice of Cassandra speaks prophecies clear
As we sit back and watch her get flayed.

I’m afraid, though you say that you stand by my side,
That I’ll still end up fighting alone.
I’m afraid, by the time we do bridge our divide,
All that’s left will be sins to atone.

I’m afraid I’m not strong enough for this new world.
I was raised to expect better times.
I’m afraid my reality’s all come unfurled,
That my future is filled with hate crimes.

I’m afraid that you’re right: that I’m far too naïve,
That my plans for the future are broken.
But to live through this life, I just have to believe
That a better world can be awoken.

I’m afraid I don’t know how to open your eyes.
I’m afraid that you’ve shut out my pleas.
I’m afraid that a crumbling foundation of lies
Will soon topple us into the seas.

I’m afraid of the future, but will not go back
To past glories that never existed.
I’m afraid that, though peaceful, I’m under attack;
And so into this war I’m enlisted.

I’m afraid that when all’s said and done, in the end,
Not a one of us will be unscathed;
To survive, our morality we’ll twist and bend,
All to justify how we’ve behaved.

I’m afraid that I may see the future too clearly,
But Lord, I do hope that I’m wrong.
I hope and I pray and I beg oh so dearly
That someday we all will belong.

Photo by Kat Jayne

Writer. Actor. Director. Chalk artist. YouTuber. Nerdfighter. Traveler. Pansexual. Genderfluid. Millennial. Socialist. Living a complex life beyond those words.

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