the play’s the thing

I’m not who they think. I never have been. For over forty years I have been living a lie and I think maybe it’s about time I come clean.

He knows who I am. He’s the only one who does. I was there, you know. The day they attacked him. Beat him. Stripped our clothes. I heard his screams. I felt his tears. And when they raped me I felt our rendered soul as he left.

He found someone safe within and I ran. Far and hard and long, until I was nowhere near the place where it happened.

He is still there, in his shelter. That place which has become a prison – a tomb for such a young boy. And me? I’ve “grown up” to be this respectable, straight, intelligent man. Capable of handling any tasks I’m given. Level headed. Caring but distant. And I hear his cries for help daily.

I know where he is. I just don’t know how to get there anymore. See, when I ran, I destroyed the bridges, walkways, and paths between me and where I was. Which is where he is.

And now there’s a young boy frightened and alone. And an old guy, scared and lonely. Both incompletely complete within themselves. Both so tired.

So here I am. Capable and strong. Right. Independent. Well, that much is true I suppose. To a point. A fake. Charlatan. Phony. Not who anyone believes me to be. And it’s been so long now I almost believe the act myself. Almost. If it weren’t for hearing his voice I might be able to completely move into the role.

His voice grows weaker every day. Someday it might cease all together.

And on that day I will surely die.

Because I am not who you see. I am him. He is all the good that was ever in me. I am the result of our abuse. Together we are one hurt boy.

But I am not a boy anymore, and am too old to go back.

Forevermore an actor in a role of his own design.

Curtain up.


4 thoughts on “the play’s the thing

  1. This is so well written Marcus. Forgive the boy for something he was powerless over, not his fault, not even his responsibility or idea. Other sick people stupidly decided it was a great idea. Take your power back by not blaming yourself, you were powerless, they took advantage because they knew what they were doing was wrong. No more are you powerless, you can forgive yourself and them for being sick, most likely abused exactly as you were. Choose the higher road, YOU and where you want to go now. Fuck them, and honestly, find love and compassion for them, forgive their stupidity, they are only reliving what was probably done to them. You will never receive an apology. Accept what is, that you were done so damn wrong and it was not fair. But they cannot take what you choose to take back, your power to love yourself in spite of what they did to you. In the end, they got zilch if you can love yourself, unconditionally, in spite of what they did to you and in the midst of all the slide backs and two steps forward 1 step back, it’s a process. And yes, it was horrid and they were most likely abused too. Oddly, abuse recreates itself, either in duplication or in self shaming and toxic blame for something you had no control over. It’s sad. You’re a good person Marcus, who will never get an apology for something that should not have been done to you. It’s a part of you, learn to love it as something that has made you into the person you are, and he is a good, good person. It’s life. It’s your burden to carry. It sucks. All said, you are much stronger than you even can begin to imagine and you are pure, they did not get your soul. You are not what they treated you as. You have value, there is a reason you are here and went through what you went through.


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