Strength was never a characteristic
Which, given due consideration as I hid
From the branch of a low tree,
As a child, applied to me.
Later, the ways we walked together, and strange
People I encountered, down umber alleyways,
Meant me to seek a softer, a lost space.
It was always better, to be held.
And so you raised in me the desire
To be like you, to more wildly wander:
And be like you? But then, as you grinned
So sideways at me: it never did transpire.
And so I must learn
To unlearn you, and every habit
You placed in my hand like a plaything
To preoccupy and idly concern.
The hands, not to shake for another
Cigarette; the lips, unbitten;
The mind to bring to bear the life
That, thanks to you, I have not yet written.
I will unlearn you. I have, if not strength,
At least something more gentle, and more delicate,
Something you can never learn from me.
You will see this different strength from me, yet.