Poem – Suffering

Inspiration: About Suffering by Elisa Gabbert | Poetry Foundation

In the lens of the whole world,

I have not suffered,

because I’ve never picked diamonds out of mines

as a five year old,

not waited on an island for two years

for entry into Australia,

not fled a war.

Yet, on the canvas of my one life,

I can map the valleys and dirt roads

where I broke down,

wheels shattered to nothing,

axles broken,

and I could have said: ‘I suffer.’

Even the Queen of Sheba,

reclining on a bed strewn with furs,

must have wished herself dead,

rather than listen to Solomon whine

about what she didn’t gift him.

Part and parcel of life

is suffering.

That’s what the poets tell me anyway.

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