By Alexa Renner

Not That Important

Not that important.
That’s what she says to me.
As if the beat of her heart
Isn’t keeping me on earth,
As if the breath in her lungs
Isn’t my life,
As if her smile
Isn’t my soul.
Not that important,
They say to me
As if she isn’t 
As if she isn’t
My friend,
As if she isn’t
Oh God!
If you exist
Take it from her,
Give it to me
Make them see
The injustice!
Smite them
Instead of her!
Nothing to be done
Society speaks.
As if they can’t spare
One medication,
As if she is
A burden,
Not a carrier of burdens,
As if she
Did something to deserve this.
That’s what justifies
The stopping
Of her heart.


Words that sum up
Not really
Didn’t you see?
Neighbors helping neighbors
New charities sprung up
Like dandelion weeds
Thought for a second
(An unusual occurrence)
Put aside the weapons
And fought two greater foes
The first is easier to beat.
COVID was the wild boar
Our job was to cut off
Its ugly head
It charged
We put up shields of cloth
And weapons of needles
We’ve trapped the beast
Possibly forever
The second is harder.
Alone in a dark room
Thinking, thinking, thinking
Slice across the skin
Nothing left
Mental illness
Preying on us
Then, hope
Some killed
Political differences
To talk to the human
Next door
Some lassoed
Angry feelings
Reigned them in
To live like brothers
Some shed
Their own enjoyment
To help
The hurting hearts
We all have hope
And that will never be broken

Mental Illness

Shut up,
Put up
Be glad the 
Allow you to exist
With mental illness
What if they’re wrong
What if they’re the mentally ill?
They lied about everything else
“Schizophrenics are violent, always”
They say
They have wars every other week
Excuse me, who’s the violent one here?
“Depressed people don’t make good friends”
They say
Friends don’t try to harm friends
So what does that make them?
“Autistics are self absorbed”
They say
While putting themselves
Above another human
Not all are like that
There are some good ones
There are many bad ones
Perhaps I’m being unfair to them
After all, they all have something in common
With us:
There is no them and us
There is just humanity

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