There was a time, not so long ago when I could hit my wife and no one called me a brute.
I could blacken the eyes of my youngest son and no one said it was abuse.
This world moves about in an arrogant wagon collecting this boy, that girl,
Instructing tolerance, teaching patience
But I shall not conform.
I long for the day when it was quite right to hate you because you’re Irish, German, Spanish, a Jew.
I long for the day when I didn’t have to explain
Why I won’t hire you, house you or sell you my goods.
He’s Lebanese, he’s African, he’s White.
It was enough, back then it was enough.
I could slap a queer and my buddies would buy a round,
Beat up a bum in exchange for a pat on the back,
Roust boys from the other side of the tracks and lead others down my path of unbridled wrath.
Such noble days are a thing of the past.
I yearn for the years when mothers commonly looked the other way as her daughter’s innocence was stolen.
I ache for the easy times when all I had to do was teach her to cook and be a wife
How to accept drunken revelries and anger driven nights.
But now, now she has to discover her way,
Explore womanhood in a world of free thought.
She’ll be lost to me and no amount of baked goods will turn her head back
To when gender roles where clear cut
And behavior was controlled by irrational thoughts.
No one stepped outside the box.
I long for those days.
Strength has been replaced by psychobabble based on delusions,
Sicknesses scribbled on scrap paper by a man made famous by his addictions.
Untie your boot straps.
Air your dirty laundry all to your family’s shame.
Oh times, how they have changed.
I use to hit you and answer to no one
Turn my back and ignore evil
Teach boys to be boys
And hear “maybe yes” when you said “no”.
For those days I long
But my heart clings to what does not sway.
Through war, through peace, generations lost,
Foundations torn and laid
Still we celebrate the marriage between victim and blame.
Copyright 2008 © F. Magdalene @ Sundrip Journals
All rights reserved
The point of this poem is that some things change and others are slow to follow. We as a society see people wronged and even call for justice but we still give part of the blame for such crimes to the victim. Many anymore would be up in arms at the thought of allowing their child (male or female) to be hurt. Reasonable people don’t accept violence as the norm and reasonable people don’t separate class based on race. But a large number of those who find it unthinkable to do these things often give a certain amount of blame to victims of crime (male and female victims). That is the point of this poem, some things change and others are slow to follow.