Poetry is a Venue

Poetry is a venue
Where truth can be told
Emotions allowed to unfold
Should the reader not like what is written
I can hide behind the words and pretend
It was just a poem
You know I’m a writer
Just exploring thoughts and emotions
Yet in this poem I am confessing
“Honey, I’ve got a poem for you to read”
I don’t want to be married anymore
And when I say it’s not you, it’s me
I’m being sincere
I’m tired of choosing anything over me
This isn’t the life I want
I’m not sure I ever desired ‘this’
Please understand
I love you
I’ve just come to realize
I’m tired of hating myself
I’ve hated myself from the first time
I betrayed my own heart for the sake of another
My self-loathing increasing
Every time I pushed myself further away from me
Not just into second place or last place
I shoved myself so far away
I questioned my own existence
I’ve made everyone else the king of my life
Made myself a slave to parents and lovers
Somehow I believed I was doing the right thing
Loving those who needed loved
Helping those who needed help
Driven by compassion
I imprisoned myself
Self-judged, self-executed
But, I’ve finally come to the conclusion
It’s time my sentence was commuted
The day has come for me to be free
I love you
I always have and I always will
I know if would be easier for you to understand
If I were leaving you for another woman
You could accept someone younger, prettier
Blame me for being a “middle-aged man”
I wish I could make this less painful for you
Help you see this isn’t about rejecting you
It’s all about me discovering me
“You should have figured this out before!”
You scream
“Fifteen years of my life wasted!”
You cry
My heart for you, for others
Has turned to stone
My heart now only beats for me
I’ll be leaving tomorrow
She finishes reading, face tear-stained
“Is this true?”
I feel the agony in her words
I want to be honest and say yes
She places her hand on my chest
I want to be cold and callous
Push her hand away
But the stone I claim crumbles away
It was just a poem my dear
You know I’m a writer
Exploring thoughts and emotions I lie
And again to myself
I die