Poemetry by T.A. Barnhart


the bullies,
when i was young,
were girls & boys
who needed
to let me know,
violently, if possible,
what a little shit
i was.
i believed them.
to this day,
i believe them.
but today, however,
i don’t need
other people
to bully me.
as an adult,
i take responsibility
for my own life.
i bully myself,
ruthlessly & efficiently.
it takes
only a moment,
only a thought
for me to remember
the truth learned
long ago:
what a little shit
i am.
even before
i know i am
doing it,
i can topple
the most modest
of dreams,
the barest smudge
of hope.
i have grown
into the man
my classmates
must have known
i would become.
thanks, kids.
i am grateful
for the encouragement
all those years ago.

©TA Barnhart August 26, 2020