by C. Ikpoh

Who am I that life has decided to bear down its eternal cycle of crippling oppression upon me? Am I not made of the same flesh and blood as the man next to me? Were we not all molded from the same clay? The answer is an inexplicable yes. Yet, cruelty has decided its exclusivity shall only be shared with me. Pain has abandoned all other lovers to lay next to my aching body night... after night... after night. Sorrow only sings in a key audible to the loneliest of souls, which just so happens to be my own. Fear and despair have claimed my spirit to complete their trinity of damnation. I am imprisoned amongst phantoms within a fortress of unfamiliar regularities. It is impossible to feel the relief of one's uniqueness; the sole thing explaining the reason for my oppression.


Who are you that life has decided to envelop you with its endless array of joys and pleasures? Does your blood not bleed red as mine? Is your chest not filled with the same air, belly with the same foods and water? Yet, the angel of joy instills immeasurable pleasure within you. Every corner you turn reveals more solace and comfort. Every horizon broached opens valleys of wonder and awe inspiring blessings inscribed with your name and face. Freedom reigns inside the walls of your four chambered heart, each section pumping the essentials of good fortune: life, love, happiness and health. You are the one saviors reach for, messiahs prophesie to, and champions are motivated by. Your skin never shall feel any hardship. The sun embraces you with love.


If only these things would be mine. Can the universe be cruel enough to transfer existences? Such is my dream. Identities must be defined by the adoption of another's world. Are shoulders strong enough to suspend each other? Are hearts strong enough to beat in the next body? All that I am would see you crumble, and all that you are is what I deserve. Irony is a stranger to me as my identity demands the nature of your existence. It is what I am owed by the stars and planets for a lifetime of misalignments. My identity must be redefined, and as it is, yours is rewritten. You develop into the embodiment of my chaotic yesterdays. Your identity shall wither under the fire of my personal anarchy. I will be who I am destined to be. Who will you become?