The Man at the Door Says No

Between me and the poem there
is a door and a man who guards
the door. He thinks he has a clear
image of who to let inside.

For years now, we have tried to be
friends, but he's a demanding critic,
saying he just wants to help and
that every house must have a door.

   But he has no love in his heart.

He watches over the playground
of my fantasy like a mean
priest prods his boys from the open
field back into the one-room school.

And he neither rests nor sleeps.
I look out my window into
nameless landscapes, thinking I sense
the faint figure of a new friend.

   But the man at the door says no.

So here I sit, alone in my house.
I dare not even try. Songs I
might have sung lie mute and dumb like
children who were never allowed to speak.

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