[don’t let them tell you]

poetic slam written by cassidy cole

i remember the first time you wrote a poem, and maybe you didn’t really know it was a

poem, but you tried really hard, I know you did.


somehow that poem about a pumpkin turned into something about imagination and its

constant changing colors,


but you were so proud

and your mom put it on the fridge 

and thats when you told yourself you were going to be a poet.


i’m going to tell you one thing,


keep that little one, keep that.


keep that innocence,

that far out dreaminess,

that confidence in something ever so humble,

something ever so you


because that is the most beautiful thing,


more beautiful than big diamonds and bigger egos dressed in small name brand clothes

and a smaller set of self worth.


i’m going to tell you another thing:


don’t ever let anyone tell you what you write poems about,


for I’ll tell you, no one will ever tell you to write a poem about pumpkins

who change colors and who imagine beautiful things.


they won’t tell you to write poems about a runner who gave up to run back to the start

because all he ever wanted to do was start over, start again, not keep going.


they won’t tell you to write about the vodka that ran through your fathers veins like blood

that you knew would never, ever heal.


they won’t tell you to write about the light she found in the dark sky,

that navy blue on a stormy night,

the night she found light,

not the early morning rise or

the late afternoon rays,

but the wallowing deep, dark sky


they won’t tell you to write about the dead flowers,

the cold coffee or the constant suffering men at other men’s grip.


they won’t tell you to write about when you started kissing boys, and kissing girls.


let me tell you another thing,

you will write about all of that,

but everyone knew you would,

for you weren’t one to hide the things

they told you to,


because you never got why you would hide the bad things

because who would ever know they were bad

if they didn’t even know them in the first place?


i’ll tell you another thing,

you still don’t get that.


you wrote about the heavy breathe that you wasted on empty dandelions with empty wishes


you wrote about lighthouses with broken beacons

and burnt cigarettes that were held but never smoked

and details in torn fabric

and seas with relentless waves.


you wrote about tears slipping through teeth

and stabbing silhouettes and stiletto stomachs,


and you wrote about when you first kissed her

after thinking you were going to be kissing him

and him

and him,

but you wrote about kissing her.


and you wrote about pumpkins,

who imagined beautiful things,

and changed colors.


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