24

Its a little easier now,
Now that I'm 24

When I think about what I've experienced 
And what I have seen
A little easier than thinking 
I'm 21, still in college
And I've broken human ribs
A little easier than hearing
You're only 21
You are so naive 
You haven't seen anything yet -

A little, but not much.

At 24
I have watched a human being
Take their last breath
And I have watched a human being
Take their first 
Both at my own hands 
And the hands of my partner

At 24
I have seen defeat and surrender
Hanging by a noose on a tree
I have seen timers due to sound off 
At any second, picked them up
And turned them back
I have felt crippling pain
Unfathomable sadness
Came to terms with death
For months, he and I were pals

At 24
I have realized, understood, and took the appropriate steps to achieve
The training I need
To be exactly who I am supposed to be in this world
I have made confident decisions and taken decisive actions
And saved lives 

At 24
I have rode in the back of a box truck
With a dead body 
I have drilled a hole into a human bone,
Both alive and dead
I have analyzed and overanalyzed
Had months of nightmares trying
To process situations, what ifs
All in the name of someone
Else's life

At 24
I have seen my own flesh and blood
Destroy their only body 
And beg to die
The same week I had been contemplating 
Ending my own life
And never did I say a word about that
And not till I was alone did I finally cry

At 24 
I have seen families destroyed 
Intentionally and unintentionally 
I have seen beloved pets smoulder and stop breathing
I have been through countless ethical dilemmas
Never to be mentioned or brought up to question or for others to understand,
Its better to lie
Just tonight I had a girl in my care with a broken ankle 
She showed me a picture of her girlfriend 
With such longing for acceptance in her eyes
That it wasn't hard to see 
That her biggest problem lied in
The fault of society, not a fault in her bone
I had a man with three problems,
AIDS, rectal cancer and severe hypotension 
Grey as the subject matter,
Trying to leave this world

At 24
I have come to terms with
A narcissistic mother
An alcoholic father 
Broken family ties on both sides,
A sexual assault and the loss of
An opportunity because of it
I've seen sinners survive and heroes 
Take their own lives

At 24
Its a little easier to think about 
What I have experienced 
When it hurts so hard
To have so soon given up
My innocence

At 24 
Its a little easier

But not much.

◄ Trenches

Escape ►

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