On almost any street, at any time
Encircled by indifference,
Jostled on every side by indications
Of an altogether different way of life –
We walk enclosed in the Satanic Order of Fear.
Half grateful for a crowd that does not care, ?
Half longing for just one glance
How long is a life time
When day follows day without meaning ?
And how much use is the pain
When half-seeing the way to liberty –
There still remains a barrier ?
The responsibility of breaking through is too great –
But the silence of non-communication is almost unbearable.
We cannot ask for what we want –
Partly because we do not know our need
And partly because we cannot bear any more disappointment.
And so, from behind our safe, sad enclosure
We send unspoken pleas for someone to break through the barrier
(But not too fast, and not too far).
O, if you come at all, it must be slowly, gently.
For more than anything we fear your domination.
You see, there is so little which we can control –
So do not take away the independence that we have .
And if you come – be patient –
We have never learned to trust
And we don’t know how to give.
But most of all we ask that you
Will not give up. –
We are so afraid that we will give up ourselves –
But believe us, we don’t really want to.
We long to be like you and join with you
Freely in loving and giving and sharing and living.
We would never really say all this –
But if we could, we’d say so very much.
Help us to talk………just a little.
Although we’ll never admit it, we wish
That somehow we could let you know
That we do need you –
Deep in our unbelieving hearts, we pray
That you will not stop trying
And will not go away.
For Susan – Spring 1966