Some Helpless Creature

By Robin Grewal, TIWP Student

They named me,
for that was what I was.
Some helpless creature
they locked away
in a bird cage made of crinolines,
roaming the halls
with the drapes drawn
and hands slender and weak.
‘Why must I stay inside?’
I asked once, foolishly.
His teacup clinked against its plate.
‘Because you are a helpless creature,’
he replied,
‘And that is all.’

That night, I met courage.
She was tapping on my window glass
fingers slender and rough.
‘Come out,’
she whispered.
‘I cannot,’ I reply, frightened.
I grow.

‘Why must I stay inside?’
I asked for the second time,
tired of frills and long fingernails.
‘Because you are a helpless creature,’
he replied,
‘And that is all.’
But that was not all.

That night, I waited for courage.
‘Come out,’
she murmured.
‘Perhaps,’
I hummed.
I grow.

‘Why must I stay inside?’
I asked for the third time,
having seen a horse roam by
and wishing to one day ride it.
‘Because you are a helpless creature,’
he replied,
‘And that is all.’
And for once,
I felt helpless.

I met courage as she began to tap.
‘Come out!’
she roared.
I did not have a reply,
And so I did.
I leapt from the sill
and she vanished.
I smiled, and ran.
For I was courage,
And not
some helpless creature
after all.

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