“In This Life” by Claudia Anne Krizay

In this life I could have been
Someone great or wonderful
Just like everybody wants to be, although
I never wanted or cared to be.
I could have climbed a tree until I reached the sky
Way up there upon the highest branch for everyone to see,
Or to be as an eagle soaring above the rest
I have been told I could have been,
Somewhere along the way I hurt myself
Not intentionally, although
This I have done before, I must confess,
Only because inside of me
Something went wrong some time ago,
Perhaps even before I came into this world.
I cannot remember the day
I began to lose myself,
It happened just so long ago, although
As far back as I remember
I was so afraid of everything.
One day when I ws fourteen or so,
I also became fearful of everyone, and it was then
The world fell out from under me
I cried and cried for hours until
Everything inside of me
Wracked with pain and misery,
It seemed that suddenly after that I
Began to hear things nobody else could hear,
And believe things that others said could never be
And it seemed that on that say,
I left this world and
Stopped speaking to everyone-
Except for some far away people who lived inside of me,
Not so far away from me, however-
People only I could see,
People who only talked to me,
I never left my room until
Somehow I found myself
Locked in an unfamiliar place
With other people just like me.
This was nearly forty years ago, but in all honestly
All I can say,
I still cannot climb any tree and touch the sky,
I have been called an eagle with a broken wing
Who has tried so many times to fly and
Every time I lift my wings to fly, I fall to the ground once more.
Now I walk through the woods
Every single day and look up at the treetops,
Not even wanting to climb up there, for
I have found a different way to love these trees and
A way to enjoy a deep-blue sky-
I will never be great or wonderful,
I have no place in reality,
But have made the woods my sanctuary,
I cannot fly, but I can walk,
I may never reach the sky-
But I have found some peace of mind
in simple things, yes,
Like just looking at the treetops and the sky and
enjoying them- and
That is all right with me.