by Richard Vince

“There is no time to smile:
Laughter is a serious business.
You must understand this
Before I can teach you anything.”

His face is lined with years
Of resolutely not smiling;
Of keeping his joy firmly locked
Inside, bouncing around his
Solid ribcage, trying to break out.

“You must study; you must
Analyse; you must understand
Why, before you attempt to
Create anything of your own.”

The tiniest of ticks betrays
The bitterness he tastes in these
Words of questionable wisdom:
Perhaps he hears them not
In his voice, but in the voice
Of the one who imparted this
Sacred knowledge to him.

“Happiness is what you give
To others, not something you can
Take for yourself. You must
Accept this before you can
Truly commit to the path
You have chosen.”

This path was placed before me;
Call it vocation, call it fate,
But do not call it choice.
In others’ joy I will find my own,
As I always have done.

“This is not merely a costume:
It is a way of life.”

This I know, for I have been
Dressing up all my life. Now,
I do not wish to change my
Clothes: I intend to change


Posted on 10/06/2018
Copyright © 2021 Richard Vince

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