poetry by j matthew waters

boys like me

can you be held against your will
when you have no rights
caught in the crossfire of corporal
and psychological punishment
left for days in solitary confinement
preoccupied with thoughts of
licking wounds and unlocking cages

you’re supposed to be at the ballpark
but instead you’re back on the farm
picking up trash & pushing dreams
keeping your nose clean
just as you were told
but mostly concealing your shame
because that’s what boys like me do

july two thousand nineteen
copyright j matthew waters
all rights reserved

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