First they came for the communists, and I did not speak out because I was not a communist.
Then they came for the socialists, and I did not speak out because I was not a socialist.
Then they came for the labor leaders, but I did not speak out because I was not a unionist.
Then they came for the Jews, and I did not speak out because I was not a Jew.

As one day became another and others disappeared, gypsies, mentally retarded,

homosexuals, Jehovah's Witnesses, criminals, anti-socials and emigrants, I remained silent

because I was not one of them. Then it was they came for me,

but no one spoke for me because by then there was no one left to speak.

Martin Niemoller, 1945.

 

 

What will you say when they come for me?

 

Niemoller did not speak out

because he was not threatened

his beliefs, ideologies, sex was

of no concern to others

at first

 

I speak out not because I am threatened

but because

So many are

 

And In doing so

I have pulled back these curtains

lifted the blinds a peek

to let you see in these windows

to give you a glimpse of mine

of these demons we try to keep hidden

in the dark of our souls

 

It is a statement of recursive

hindsight this

I find myself often standing as Voltaire

standing up for what is right

What is honorable, what is true

Even though often what is right

And what is true

is not what you do and

it is dangerous to be right when the government is wrong

 

And among you I stand alone

 

for you prefer to keep your shades

drawn tight, as if permanence

can be exuded through your denial

your demons you pretend are

a phantom temptation you

hope to will away through penance

prayer you can will away

by closing your eyes,

by closing your heart

 

but you can never close your soul

 

I ask of you:

are we good souls tempted by evil?

or are we evil souls struggling to be good?

 

And I am often afraid

Not of the demons we try to hide

nor those we allow to escape

but because of the fear that drives

Your thoughts

The fear that drives your will

The fear that denies the truth

I am afraid of what you fear

and often what you fear is me

 

I have loved you and

in loving you I allow you to possess

these truths which have come to

define me which have come to drive me

which have come to frighten you

 

Your demons possess you

and you say it is not you but something else

and you believe that you can hide from them

that they are not a part of you

that they are not a part of you -- you embrace

a part of you -- you indulge in

you fancy and dally with

on the outskirts of your temptation

so you close your eyes in denial

seeking comforting in the dark

a darkness that frightens you

because there -- there are no demons

only you alone with your own personal thoughts

 

And you say that those something elses

Those plays of darkness

Those images incarnate inherent

are not a part of you

 

I have entrusted in your care now

My secrets

You have become the caretaker of the truth

My soul

And now I fear you

not because there is no one to speak up for me

I have you

not because there is no one to stand up with me

for I have you

 

I fear you

Because you are afraid of the dark

Because you are afraid of what they will say

 

I fear you

Not because you will not speak up for me

but rather

 

What you will say to make them come for me?

 

 

 



©2005 khristianekay All rights reserved

 

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