All or nothing

All or nothing cover image, poem by Pierre Minik

All or nothing

“You are lucky”
they self-assuredly assert

“You have double of everything”
they proclaim so sure of themselves

Two heritages
Two mother tongues
Two families
Two homes
Two places to belong

It’s the lie
in any one of them
that shatters the shelter
of all the other lies
meant to comfort

Time and time again
they show you
in words and in actions
that you are never
to belong to either

You vividly recall
when you understood
that it is always
all or nothing
and never both
at the same time

Full of doubt
and uncertainty
you trade to get
freedom and peace
as you choose
a stance
a loyalty
a default

And with the
pledge of allegiance
worn as a faux mask
you feel as if
you’ve sold your soul
for something
that was just meant
to hide the
rage and agony


Posted in