Empathic Poem by Bryan Sefton


They said I was mad. Oh yes, quite insane
They said it's all up here in the brain
He's cracked up, broke down
Whatever level you prefer, it's still the same
Well they've got letters at back of their name, they should know
But I was insane, why?
Well for instance I couldn't see a baby
But that I'd break down and cry
They said 'normal people don't do that
I said 'really? Is that a fact?
Well I do. I do it regular'
They said that it was very irregular

Oh but babies! Pretty little helpless things
Wide eyed, innocent, trusting
All sucking on a thumb
I cried for what they would become
Well look around you, they're all here
All the children of yesteryear
Barely a one to give you the time of day
So I cried, as I say, like a baby

Well they said it so I must have been crazy
Like I could spend all day looking into a daisy
Or a rose and God knows you have to be crazy to do that
But I'd lie down flat looking into a flower for hour after hour
Just looking. Admiring. Feeling the softness of it
Seeing the beauty of it. The structure of it. The colours
Such a fragile tender little thing
Wanting only the tiniest part of a great big world
In which to wait For spring
But these men in their clean white clothes said
'Normal people don't do that'
I said 'well now, is that a fact? '

When they said 'you refuse to consume food'
I begged their pardon
They said 'you refuse to eat'
'I only refuse so that others may eat'
'But we want you to get well'they said
We're concerned. We care
'Then for God's sake feed the hungry out there!
There's millions of them all wanting their food! '
And they said not to argue and not to be rude
Normal people don't do that
I murmured 'that's a fact'

I once sat on an ants nest, quite by accident
I didn't know until they began to crawl over me
Such busy hurrying little things
That didn't bite, didn't sting
I didn't move, just sat quiet still
For fear that if I did I'd kill one of them
And I didn't want to do that
They're as much a part of this world as me
And just like me they want to live, to be free
And not come down on by a clumsy fool like me
It took me hours to get to my feet
Hours to get them off
I don't think I hurt any

Then the doctors stood around me like a pet canary
Said 'we believe you've seen the Virgin Mary? '
Now! This is what it's all about. This is what we're here for
This is what we're sitting here going through my brain for
Trying to sort the good from the bad
So I nodded my head and said that I had
So they conversed with each other and said
'Normal people don't do that'
Well I burst out laughing 'THAT's a fact'
After further consulting they turned to me
Saying 'well? What did you see? '

Oh mother of God! They ask me what did I see?
How do I, a crazy man? How do I teach the blind to see?
Sight of sights, how do I describe you?
Vision, not of this world, how do I put you?
A million supernovas bursting into the night
May simply be termed as candlelight
Woman. Perfect woman
Whose perfect good. Whose perfect peace
Whose perfect love reached out to me
Reached out to me like the warmth of the sun
And she smiled at me with the pain of one
Who has known suffering, and is suffering
And will continue to suffer until her last confused child
Who stands alone comes home. And her eyes said
'It's hard. I know that it's hard, but bear with it
For I share in it, and I will help you along'
But they asked me what did I see?
I said 'I saw the Mother of Jesus
They said it wasn't so
I asked 'how do you know? '
To which they replied 'it was all in your mind
So I asked them one to the other
'didn't Jesus have a mother? '
Yes, they agreed it was So
So I asked 'how do you know? '
They staggered as if they'd been bitten
Saying- -well, because it was written'
So I laughed as I put on my coat
Saying 'believe it, when you get my note'

Wednesday, July 8, 2020
Topic(s) of this poem: empathy,considerateness

Bryan Sefton

Farnsworth near Bolton, England, UK
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