4 November – Hannah Weiner
JUMPING, SCREAMING, SHOUTING
I say something lightly
and you pick up the word.
You don’t hear me jumping, shouting,
screaming, praying for you to know
I’m not okay.
You don’t know that the walls will cave in and
the door will lock and what I need then is for you to stop
trying to please all of everyone else and just
listen to me and my heart –
it’s beating so frantically because
it knows what you used to do and how you just knew and how
I wouldn’t need to jump or scream or shout because
you’d just hear me. Now maybe you’re immune.
Maybe you know I’ll never truly be okay so maybe
you gave up
and my heart’s still beating so fast waiting for you to hear my uncertainty
in each word that I speak,
in each sentence I refuse to repeat,
in each phrase that tries to compete with the jumping and screaming and shouting.
but you just won’t listen.
Hannah Adelle Weiner
(4 November 1928 – 11 September 1997)