Color Inside the Lines dress up look nice stay in line mind your manners clock in clock out buy your insurance pay your fines file your taxes color inside the lines submit to illegitimate authority defined only by force stay between the rails keep your nose to the grindstone keep your snout down sniffing at the ground keep your mind off existential matters keep your face down in the evaporation pools all the way down in the cesspools of old-man mud keep your eye on the prize as you openly profess how much you love the struggle and the charade of your subservient life get it up and keep it up don’t let those in charge see you put your zealous mantle down don’t let them see you slink off into the far corner hiding from the cameras of the Polizei to work the words in the folds of your journal and those of your cerebellum don’t let them see, or even suspect that you have a plan for freedom don’t let them even suspect that you think you know freedom can actually be had don’t let them see don’t let them know don’t let them even have reason to suspect that you know the nature the will the power and the omnipresence of your freedom and their existential need to oppress, deceive, enslave, and control you. let them believe you are beaten and dumb, let them believe, but always always rebel erode and resist.
James Redfern was born and raised in Long Beach, California. Redfern is a graduate of Grinnell College. His work has been published by The American Journal of Poetry, Transcend, Verity La: The Clozapine Clinic, Dime Show Review, Swimming with Elephants, Montana Mouthful, Anti-Heroin Chic, Passengers Journal (forthcoming), Great Lakes Poetry Press, Fear and Loathing in Long Beach, and elsewhere.
Copyright © 2020 Writing for Peace. All rights reserved.