A Kind Of Poverty

what you love
you claim
what you despise
claims you
what you know
and remain indifferent to 
explains you
what you do not know
and others do
reframes you

thus I
learn like mad
have opinions
avoid hating many
and love few

all in an effort to 
surrender little
of myself

stories you tell
of what you see
become what people see
of you

stories you tell
of how you see what
you see become
your angle on what
you are

when pushed to speak
I over-explain
and therefore negate
how little I surrender
of myself so
I am learning
silence and
how to tolerate
the growing lack
of self-delusion
that naturally follows

people who are
indifferent to me
are killing me
by millimeters

I am learning
indifference to them
each lesson a bullet
fired in self-defense

this resultant loneliness
is an expression of
a kind of poverty
much like how after a war
a country
is often in ruins
its people walking dazed
by what was once familiar
having become indifferent
to its former self

they starve eventually
or leave


About Tony Brown

A poet with a history in slam, lots of publications; my personal poetry and a little bit of daily life and opinions. Read the page called "About..." for the details. View all posts by Tony Brown

6 responses to “A Kind Of Poverty

  • Eileen

    Thought provoking……
    “all in an effort to surrender little of myself”……..I get that.
    “learning silence and how to tolerate the growing lack of self delusion”…… resonates sharply for me.
    And I remember when it dawned on me that hardly anyone, including my children. even thought about me when we were not together; that unmarried people are not first in anyone else’s life, and what a shock that is for widows and widowers after long marriages……..
    the war ravaged emptiness of a homeland destroyed and all that was familiar and comforting gone – really does sound like what that must feel like…and we starve by clinging to what was…..
    It takes courage to start over alone and pretty much invisible to those in your new world.

  • Léa

    Choosing love not hate…

  • Scottish Author and Poet Kirsty Grant

    Love this

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