The Weight of Silence

Author: Monisha Vasa

Why have I been silent all of these years?
A quiet, sterile surface,
afraid of not having answers,
afraid of my own ignorance and privilege,
afraid of ruffling feathers.
I have been silent.
Silent like tears falling at night,
silent like a flower wilting to powder,
silent like storm clouds brewing.
But now, the truth is, I no longer know
the sound of my own voice,
and I can feel the shame of my ancestors’ ancestors,
as they wonder how their hearts got
lost in translation somehow.
The truth is, my silence is a breeding ground
for injustice and fear, a vacuum of sorts
for someone else’s words to fill.
No more, no longer.
The weight of my silence has
buried me into the ground.
The weight of my silence has oppressed
more than aggression and hate and prejudice.
The weight of my silence has taken away
freedoms and health and choices and lives
from those who were counting on
people like me to stand up.
No more, no longer.
I will speak.
I will ask.
I will love.
I will write.
I will protect.
Be it a whisper or a roar,
Be it a bad poem or a wrong answer,
One word of compassion weighs more
than silence ever will.

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