Now The Voices Say

Poem By Samah Khan

Now the voices say ‘rest child’,
They reverberate through my soul, whirring like old machines,
Bickering like aged aunts; And I want to listen,
I am tired and my bones have grown past my age-
But my soul moves me on, pushing me through the worn path,
Persistent in writing me a reputable epithet that men shall speak of
Long after I am gone.
But I am tired beyond compare, unequivocally weary-
Intoxicated by the scent of the coming challenges
That caress me into a sleep from which I will not soon awake.
Yet they say ‘rest child’ as if troubles are caused by the ancient moon,
And dissipate with the coming of the new sun.

Now the voices say ‘do not fear child’
As if fear knocks on the door of conscience before it enters-
And I laugh, for what else am I to do? Life has been a cruel cacophony
Of unrelated events- each one challenging the last to be the worst;
And so fear of pain, fear of failure, fear of fear torments me,
Its claws scratching through my skin, into my nerves, into my bones
Till there is nothing left to scratch.

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