“Stoic Courage” by Lisa Cappiello

A man of few words, his life experiences decorate the majority of his flesh
Humble, he gives thanks regularly
Puts others in front of himself and willingly reaches out to those in need
But at first glance you'd never know
As his large, purple heart is hidden by oversized clothing

His music enabled the world to get a glimpse of what his inner circle saw clearly
Fueled by drive and determination, he obtained his professional goal while staying true to himself
On this particular night, the spotlight was fixated on him
He basked in the glory of his well deserved success while joyful energy radiated stronger than his colossal persona
Until his selflessness shot him
Straight back to reality

Erroneously accused
He returned to the scene of the crime voluntarily in an attempt to clarify the muddle and rectify any wrong
The deceit was cleverly masked
As was the ambush from the regulators
Prejudged by society
All they saw was his packaging
They found no reason to look beyond his exterior and hear his version of the truth
He fit their profile, perfectly

As the cold metal pinched the tender skin on his wrists he barely made a sound
All he asked was for his voice to be heard, respectfully
His compliance was rewarded with force
Required to submit at the mercy of injustice, he was manhandled, then lobbed into a cage
His spirit deteriorated and was replaced with disgust
He never stood a chance

He reached inside and drew from the strength that earned him a medal in his past life
He was not stifled for long
Cards unfolded, he critiqued his traits but refused to conform
The next set of challenges were eagerly anticipated as he held his head higher than ever
For when he looked in the mirror
He saw a man