Monday, February 16, 2015

Accidental Exile

Note: This poem is written about a specific occurrence from this past summer. It does not in any way represent my usual state of mind; only what happens when my tendency to be shy and socially awkward comes into conflict with my occasional desire to actually spend time with other people.
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Accidental Exile

I sit alone
In the middle of a group of friends.
I fake a smile
And listen as they talk:
Around me,
Past me,
Through me.
I try to think of words to say,
Of a key to let me in to this conversation,
But it’s hard to talk
When you know nothing about the subject
And there’s no space to get a word in anyway.
And so, I stay silent
And pretend that I don’t mind.

Later
I sit alone again,
Hidden away in my room.
I chose to come;
No one chased me away
With hurtful words and jeers.
I chose to come;
Chose self-imposed exile
Over invisibility.
But
Through window,
Through door,
Down the halls,
And around corners,
I see them, hear them:
Others together,
Watching movies, playing games, studying-
Not alone.
I chose to come,
But knowing that doesn’t help,
Because my internet friends feel farther away than ever,
And music isn’t the same as conversation.

A friend enters,
And I jump up, asking questions.
She tells me of another friend not feeling well
And I ask to help,
But she says no,
No,
Everything’s fine now.
She tells of their plans,
And I know I cannot join in,
So I do not bother to ask.
She would say no,
No,
It’s already crowded in there.
She leaves,
And I return to my screen,
Reminding myself that it’s my choice-
That I’m not allowed to watch that show anyway-
That I’ll be fine alone.
I always am.

Why is it so hard?
Alone was always good enough before;
Why not now?
My books, my characters, my computer;
They were friends enough before.
Why no longer?

Why is it so hard?
Why can’t others see?
Why can’t others hear?
I’m here!
I’m not invisible!
My silence doesn’t mean
I have nothing to say.
It just means I don’t know how to say it,
And you won’t give me the chance.
I ask to join you-
In my way-
But you don’t hear me,
Or you don’t realize what I mean:
Please,
Please, I want more
Than a book and a computer screen.
Please,
Please, I want to join you,
To talk and laugh
And play games with a real person-
Not just another username
On the other side of the internet.
Not just another character
Who cannot leave the page.
Please,
Please, just for a little while,
I don’t want to be alone.
I ask,
But you don’t hear me.

I know,
It’s not all their fault.
It’s mine.
I should try harder-
Speak louder-
Ask more questions-
Make myself known, not wait to be noticed.
I know.
But it’s hard to step out
And easy to hide
And so I convince myself that
Alone is better than invisible,
Better than feeling like an awkward fool,
And I remain
Alone.

5 comments:

  1. Wow... That almost explains most of my experiences socializing... Actually, pretty accurate of what happened at the retreat I was at.

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    Replies
    1. Ouch. *hugs*
      Thanks for reading/commenting!

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  2. First off you are such a talented writer. This is fantastic.
    Secondly, this hit a little close to home. Socializing and myself have never really mixed to well. Even if I wanted us to.
    Thanks for sharing this. :)
    -Esmerelda

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  3. Good job with your poem. You expressed some of the feelings I have had in the past.

    Sadly, it about sums up a couple years of high school. I went to a new school and tried so hard to make friends, but they were in tight cliques and I couldn't figure out what to say to include myself. And I lived so far away, I couldn't do much with them outside of school. But, things are different now. High school is over, and I managed to make a few good friends to spend time with and who understand me.

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    Replies
    1. *hugs* I'm sorry you went through that, but I'm glad things have improved since then. Thank you for reading, commenting, and sharing.

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