As I travel through life
I am assaulted by a barrage of noise and hostility.
A man on a soapbox screams down at me
telling me why I should be afraid,
telling me why I should be angry.
I try to understand why he is so incensed;
I try to ask questions...
“Questions are not allowed!” the man screams down at me.
The people gathered around him like sheep
glare suspiciously at me.
“Only traitors ask questions,” they mutter.
The man on the soapbox points his crooked finger at me.
“You are either with us, or against us!”
His face is a contorted mask of rage.
I try to run from his fury and from his intolerance
but he is everywhere.
He shouts at me from the street corners.
He shouts at me from the radio.
He shouts at me from the television.
He shouts at me from the pulpit.
I curl into a ball to shield myself from his cacophony of hate
and I pray for silence.
copyright © 2011 Kevin Routh