The Invisible Cage

Looking around a group of trusted compatriots,
suddenly seeing how finite and circumscribed
their personalities are, like everyone.
How exquisitely limited their options at any point,
how those limitations
have etched themselves into their faces,
as in stone.

Then looking inward,
to my own etched-in-stone face,
bound like Prometheus to the rock
of ‘a decent supply of self-worth
and the reasonable esteem of others,’
an invisible cage around
the spark inside me
sent down from the stars.

Like any other junkie, these monkeys
howl, demanding to be fed,
and regularly.
But do I have to obey?
Is it possible to stand back a bit
from that ingrained impulse,
and just watch it try to work
its seedy magic?
Was I sent down from the heavens
specifically to toughen up
enough to resist that siren’s call?
Can this seeing
be used to
slowly unlatch
the invisible cage
around me?

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