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You hear the sweet melody / While I see it with my eyes.

Look at me
Don’t you dare look away
Look me in the eyes
As I search for the words to say with my pain.
Listen with your eyes
When all around is silence for me.
Look deep into my eyes
For the words I’m looking for are in my hands.
When the words from my mouth don’t make any sense
Just listen to these hands.
Just please listen.
Can you see I’m dying inside?
Can you see I just want to breathe again?
Everything around me is slowly suffocating me.
Can you feel the pounding in my chest?
It feels like it about to burst into a million pieces.
For years I listen . . .
using your way
with my eyes staining on your lips
Missing words
Never getting it all . . .
You tell me “Never mind”
as you frown and walk away . . . Broken words keeping us apart. 
I wish there was a way
I know there is a way
You choose to deny who I am.
We are the same, but different.
You hear the sweet melody
While I see it with my eyes.
I feel it with my heart.
I’m standing up
and telling you today,
I wouldn’t drown away.
I’m breaking free . . .
Now it your turn to Listen . . .
Listen to my hands

This piece is part of the “Listen to My Hands” portfolio, cosponsored by the Poetry Coalition for its 2022 theme “The future lives in our bodies: Poetry & Disability Justice.”