Jim Yerman


Different or Unique? Poem by Jim Yerman


There is a word in our language that, when we look upon our life
Is the reason the world has so much trouble, the cause of so much strife.

That word is DIFFERENT for how delightfully enjoyable and beautiful would our world be
If so many people didn’t look at one another and see them differently?

When we see someone as different fear seeps into our hearts and minds
And where there’s fear...animosity, hatred and prejudice cannot too far behind.

What starts out merely as a way to tell that person apart from you or me
Somehow ends up with people treating one another differently.

We end up in a word of labels, a world of discrimination, chaos and entropy
A world of injustice, oppression, of wars and bigotry.

A world where suspicion and distrust rule and seeds of animosity are sown
All caused when we find traits in people that are different from our own.

What if we all looked at one another in a completely different way
What if we could find a word that would keep our fear at bay.

What if we weren’t afraid of diversity but reveled in it’s mystique
And instead of seeing others as different, we saw them as unique.

Perhaps then, in each life, we might focus on the good things that we see
And in the end create a world of peace and harmony.

I imagine by now many of you are thinking this man is different, he’s a freak
Ah, but I suggest you not think me different, no I prefer the word unique?

(Did you notice when you call me different a host of negatives abound
But when you use the word unique...see how wonderful it sounds?)

It seems to me we should strive for a world where differences aren’t critiqued,
A world where people are more accepting...hmmm, now wouldn’t that be unique?

Submitted: Saturday, February 08, 2014
Edited: Saturday, February 08, 2014

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