Alibi

(click here to watch a video of me reading the poem)

Alibi

When you fail, you cry
Because you believed the lie
That if you try
With all your might
If you pursue a single line of sight
Looking neither to the left nor right,
Ignoring the distractions and delights
There is no height
You cannot reach
So when you don’t
You’re the failure, right?
Not them.
Your dreams provide their alibi.

But I know there are things I’ll never achieve
And I deceive myself if I believe I will.
My limitations are a bitter pill
Of stillborn expectations
And thrills I had to leave behind
But I was too blinded by stories
Of glory, fame and wealth
To see that I had whored myself
To the lie that I’m alone.
You see the only dream that counts
Is that we all count,
That every voice is heard
Every hope, anxiety, despair
Every tear you shed that no one saw
Because you turned away
And every desperate word
That you were too ashamed to say.
And I can’t do that on my own.
And that’s
OK.

Do not comply
With what they tell you to desire.
Defy the boundaries
They place upon your mind
And start a fire
That will not die
Until your whisper
And that of every brother, sister
Mother, father, lover,
Every angry fist in history
Unclenches and becomes a kiss
And every pair of lips becomes a choir.

Don’t let your dreams provide their alibi.
Make them accountable for every crime,
For every voice that they deny.
Look them in the eye
And let your rhymes and passion fight them.
Unite and let your love and the fact that after every disappointment you still believe in this sorry species indict them.
When you embrace humanity in its broken condition,
When ensuring those who cannot speak are spoken for’s your mission
And you chase the truth till every eye is open,
Every sleeping conscience woken,
Then your vision can incite them
To a revolution.
So take a moment, and your dreams,
And write them.
Go out into the alleys and recite them
And if humanity evolves
Sufficient to resolve
To make a reckoning
Of those who were involved
In lifting us from the mire
And those who just devolved
The choice to someone down the line
You’ll stand absolved,
Your head held high.
Their dreams,
The ones that you made fly,
With a whisper, quiet as a lullaby,
Those dreams will be your alibi.

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