September 14, 2006

By Alison Hymes '78

Deep sorrow in an open heart is scarier than the NSA or a hurricane,

An open heart with a face that authentically mirrors the inner workings of a loving spirit terrifies,

Alive in the moment is fearsome to those who are not,

And I who thought I was long past all that sit trembling before the reality of it all.


For J.C. in Western State Hospital

At night, I think of you, caged in a room, as I so blessed, walk freely on my land and gaze at the trees and stars.

It could be me.

Locked in, cut off, despised and patronized.

Caught in a nightmare with no end.

A nightmare that keeps me up some nights,

but for you, it is real every night and every day.

Unique he called you. It's only one person he said.

(Except for that other one at another hospital he said and I thought except for all of them at Guantanamo)

Only one human being kept from all interaction in his language, every day of every year.

Only one man who is guilty of no crime deemed irredeemable by a state, a system and a people who do not care or can not.

It could be me.

It is not about me. It is about you and all of the yous locked up in cages.

I will fight for you until you are free and you will never know my name.

But I will sleep well knowing you can see the stars if it is your choice to look.

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