I am the outraged person who talks of the failures of others.
I am the woman who knows she is those others.
I am the woman who knows she wants to distance from the outrage.
I am the woman who wants to turn her back on the horror of it all.
I am the woman who did turn her back and neglect her children.
I am the man who did not listen.
I am the woman who did not listen and caused others to suffer.
I am the child who was not listened to and was neglected.
I am the woman whose tears are stuck, knowing all of this.
In knowing I am all of these, there is some solace, some peace.
There is angst, and sadness, and a desire to know more how it is all me.
This disaster; that seems it could have been avoided,
Is like so many disasters I have perpetrated
In my tiny life
In the hearts of those I loved well
And those I didn’t love well enough
And upon myself
Teach me to listen.
Teach me to listen for the warnings that are not spoken.
Teach me to listen for the cries at my door.
Teach me to listen to the waves of the ocean, to the rhythm of Earth.
Teach me to listen to the outrage at what has happened and what has not happened.
Teach me to listen to the one who does not know how to listen.
Teach me to hear my own cries
That I may seek your answer
You teach me to listen to you.
May I be a good student.
Written in response to the Gulf Oil Disaster – Summer 2010