Beneath the Gilt

Guilt corrodes
It dissolves
More than acid
Destroys resolve.

Wearing shame
Like a cloak of stone
While it whittles inside
Far deeper than bone.

Heavy, oppression
Weighing me down
I sink ever lower
I feel I will drown.

Feelings so strong
They paralyse
I seek to hide
From others’ eyes.

Ducking the gaze
Of my own being
I try to avoid
My true self seeing.

It’s futile, it merely
Serves to delay
Sooner or later
One must pay

Attention to
What’s going on
Discern what’s right
Forgive what’s wrong

Without getting caught up
In the black and white
What’s really “wrong”
What’s truly “right”?

Swinging from one
Extreme to the other
Losing sight and connection
Of Sister and Brother

Extremes beguile
With defined edges
Deceiving and inciting
Ardent pledges

That just don’t last
It’s all too brittle
Narrow in focus
It serves to belittle

But the middle ground
Sounds so very boring
Not standing for anything
Principle whoring

Wishy-washy
This and that
Moving with feeling
Not following fact

Feelings change
While facts are steady
Independent of whimsy
Ever solid and ready

Let me pin my flag
To someone else’s mast
Let them lead the way!
I will use their last

To mend my shoes
Repair my sole
And join their march
A fleeting parole

From the stagnant
Stench of my own prison
That I can’t escape
While I limit vision

That blurry line
The middle way
Not obeying, instead
Learning to play

With subtlety and
Gentle prods
Moving to the beat
Not beaten by a rod

No well-drawn map
No clear direction
Finding guidance in
One’s own reflection

Look at it!
Does it put you off?
Does it not fulfil?
Does it make you scoff?

Well, work on that
Alter your being
So you can smile
At what you’re seeing

Absolve the guilt
Release the shame
Forgive or understand
The effect is the same

The middle way
That diaphanous line
Of balance between
The profane and sublime

Is far more challenging
Than a rigid path
Working through feeling
Not calculation and math

There’s no one answer
Not for you or for me
We can look at the same
And different things see

It’s not that I’m right
Or that you’re wrong
Varying perspectives
All belong

Is it this way, that way
Or the other way round?
When I play my music
Do you hear the same sound?

Does it matter?
If we realise and embrace
We’re in this together
It is not a race

To get there first
Or climb up higher
This isn’t a solo
We are a choir!

My struggles are yours
With a different tint
Our gaols are different
But we’ve all done a stint

Let’s celebrate differences
And what is the same
Help each other gain clarity
To excel at this game.

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