The Real You

The Real You

I want the real you,
Not this avatar,
Where my thoughts are sucked.
This voice of yours
That speaks of fragility and hurt,
I want the real you
Because I am a man.

You say the real you is what you want
But in doing so you’d be destroyed.
There are things about you
That you cannot say
Or they would destroy the timidity you display.

You have your demons.
I say you could not be demonic
With that trembling voice.

I respect your need to hide things
You’ve left unknown.
I had to look up “heathen-”
Someone who does not believe in God,
Is uncivilized.

You are honest
And civilized.
I have no right to press you,
Gone too far.

No one is perfect;
I am that example.
But your beauty is unflawed
By your kindness,
The imperfections you have hidden
Are waved.

And yes, what appears your tolerance
Is visible and virtuous.
I am not blind to this,
Only ambitious.

Perhaps, it is your downfall
To be willing to see the beauty
In another,
Who is not so beautiful at all.
But, just as Nancy Reagan said,
You can always say, “No,”
Or in this case, “NO!”

The windfall is true.
Your perfection is my sin.

Response to a Collaboration by Michelle Oppenheimer and Stephanie Visser


I see a distance in the impression of something complicated, perhaps a modern building that was given time.
I see the glance from the interior of a living room into a thought.
I see the brush strokes of something artificial but very pleasant.
I see something created for impression-sake to drive all matter into the landscape of contemplation.
It is an exercise of the mind wandering, to an unknowable place, a softening of the blow.
It is an ice castle and red roses.
It is my thoughts about someone I shall never tell.
This is the time I stand in wait, 
Leaving all the balls on her plate.
There is a cold wind and an icy stillness but movement otherwise.
There is hope, but there is also a beautiful reality that this is not my time, but her’s and that is the point.
I am a man.
I am here to protect.
It is my job to take responsibility.
I am the last guardian of the moods of my woman, for she cannot see me yet.
I am only to remind her of the truth and justice that she believes is there.
And what shall come to pass is what she wishes.
I believe in her.