The High Art of Cruelty



Sometimes, when walking around the city for inspiration, my eyes will lock with those of an "addict," a "hustler," a "thug" or a "whore." I realize these are all labels, & we're all just human beings, each with our own stories. Here's just one. lmr



I never much liked

This species:

Human being.  Never once
Has any one of them ever
Shown me love...  never
Embraced me
Just because
I was here,
And a baby, needing
Love;  never

Kissed my cheek,
Or smiled back at me
Just because I was
Young or comely or
My smile was sincere,
If maybe a little
But still
A love-needing smile 
As a child

I realized this whole world
Could be so mean... and
Yes...  ugly words spat from
Innocent lips, sting so much...
And even children can be

I am older now.
Wiser now. 
Colder now.
Slicker... now. I
Charge them for
The high
Art of my cruelty.
Now I make them
Pay ME to be
Abused, whipped,
Spat upon,
Told they are
"Ugly!"  "Stupid"
"Worthless!"  Even more
Than me.   Imagine that! 
And I am
"A whore."  Finally

A label...
In a sordid history of labels,

I can wear this one
Like a sword or
A leather jacket, coolly  
Slung across my back .
In fact,
Whether daily or
Nightly, It's a label
I can rock
And roll with,


copyright © 2016 by L.M. Ross


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