To hear what other people are really saying, you need to listen to what they are not saying. No matter how hard people may appear on the surface, mostly everyone is tender inside and has a desperate need to be understood. The following poem captures this need.
Please hear what I’m not saying
Don’t be fooled by me,
Don’t be fooled by the mask I wear,
For I wear a mask,
I wear a thousand masks,
Masks that I’m afraid to take off,
And none of them is me.
Pretending is an art that is second nature with me,
Don’t be fooled.
I give the impression that I’m secure,
That all is sunny and unruffled with me,
Within as well as without;
That confidence is my name,
Coolness is my game,
That the waters are calm and that I’m in command
And I need no one,
But don’t believe it, please don’t.
I idly chatter with you,
In suave tones of surface talk.
I tell you everything that’s really nothing,
Nothing of what’s crying within me.
So when I’m going through my routine,
Don’t be fooled by what I’m saying.
Please listen carefully
Try to hear what I’m not saying;
What I’d like to be able to say;
I need to say but I can’t say,
I dislike the hiding.
Honestly I do.
I dislike the superficial,
Phony games I’m playing.
I’d really like to be genuine,
But you have to help me.
You have to help me,
By holding out your hand,
Even when that’s the last thing
I seem to want or need.
Each time you are kind,
Each time you try to understand,
Because you really care,
My heart begins to grow wings.
Very small wings.
Very feeble wings,
But still wings.
With your sensitivity,
And your power of understanding,
I can make it.
You can breathe life into me,
It will not be easy for you
A long conviction of worthlessness
Builds strong walls.
But love is stronger than strong walls,
Lies my hope.
Please try to beat down those walls,
With firm hands,
But with gentle hands,
For a child is very sensitive,
And I am a child.
Who am I??
You may wonder,
For I am every man,
I am every human you meet
So, treat your friends, siblings, parents, and whoever you meet, well because they are God’s creation and no matter how old they are, they are still sensitive and feeble as a child in the inside. They need you to reach out to them with your gentle hands and love, for every man, woman, and child needs….