This poem was part of a writing assignment that I gave as an exercise in empathy, the idea being to choose someone who is the opposite of yourself and to write from their point of view, without belittling or arguing. Since God is at the very nucleus of my being, naturally I chose to write from an atheistic point of view. So I dedicate this to my atheist friends who–ironically–care just as much about these issues as I do and who–I hope–I’ve presented with understanding.

Everything depends
on me
When I fail
you say
don’t take it personally
wanna label me
Type A
forests are burning
icecaps are melting
children are running
blind down machete-laden
monks are being beheaded
the hydrogen bomb still exists
Holocausts aren’t a myth
AND they’re plural
I have to lock my door at night
carry pepper spray when I walk
around my neighborhood
I’ve seen rhinos crying out on
the news footage cause some
savage sawed their horns off
for chump change
fathers are still raping daughters
and wars are still stealing sons
I could stay up twenty-four hours
a day
go without eating
march in every pride parade
still could not
pry artillery weapons
from steel perceptions
from blinded eyes with
fingers dripping blood diamonds
scepters sifting
red seas of skulls
where are your comforts
why aren’t you answering
your stars are darkening over
in this Olympus of Madness
who will show us the way
if we keep stumbling back
paths of our own misguided
I fear we are devolving
drunk on our divinity
in the flood waters
of this hell we’ve created
and no one is listening
to our cries for help
So help!
cause I can’t do this
on my own.