When Time Will Tell.

I come to tell you a secret—
one that means more than words

but less than you’ve been
preconditioned to think;

one that will reset the
nightmare count in my dreams,

but I promise, you’ll lose no less sleep–

unless you sit back and really listen–
for years, just listen,
don’t say one judgment;

and understand what
this all means for me

as a mortal, as a heart,
as a mother’s child,
& a father’s seed.

I come to tell you.
I come to finally tell.

I wouldn’t trade in love
for any types of chains,

I wouldn’t defy tree branches
to put myself out on
a forbidden limb …

and give all of them
permission slips to take home

to sign off & declare their
battles in private,

then revel in the darkness
in my sole spotlight.

I’d be burst into a shame
that no one would know;

& prep my ears for a secret
they’d shield from hearing

hating myself for everything

& scorning myself in
a merciless seclusion;

if I come to tell you—
a secret–

one that depends less on words–

but more than we have been
equipped to consume

as mortals, as hearts,
as mothers’ prides
and fathers’ joys,

left to search for our lights
after we give people permission

to sign off & wrestle their
revelations off scripture,

but make ample time to sermon
the darkness exposed in our spotlights.

Mark Anthony Thomas
Copyright © 2011