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Free

A poem, conceived in the wild and incubated at the Bridge:
 
I am NOT a slave.
I know it in my bones
But it’s easy to forget in the maze
A truth drowned by the lies of plastic and steel.
 
Freedom there is pain
Freedom there is rage
Freedom there is impossible
 
So I chain myself
And hate it.
I chain myself
And love it
And hate myself.
 
But I am not a slave.
I was born free
And here outside I can almost feel it.
The cedars whisper it all day
And the coyotes’ song
In the deep of night
Insists to me:
 
No strings, no strings
You are free, you are free!
 
And as I sleep,
That wild and terrifying comfort
Fills all my dreams
 
And the next time
The lies drown out
All peace and joy
 
They are a little less deafening
Than the last time.
 
Peace,
—Joel

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