Two incidents surprised me recently.
A couple of the people I love most
(one lifelong friend and one close family)
asserted they need words as speech or post.
They want to hear “I love you,” “You’re the best,”
“I’m sorry,” “I’ll admit that I was wrong.”
Behavior’s insufficient, they both stressed.
They claimed their stance was popular and strong.
I don’t agree. Although I’d have preferred
the pen to be the weapon beyond all,
I’ve spent my life devoted to the word,
and know the true effect of talk is small.
I’ve pondered why our species learned to speak.
I always wanted language to be clear
and used for truth (like all the Houyhnhnms seek),
but life has taught me action is what’s dear.
I wearied with too many “I love you”s.
Assertions smothered me and sucked my air.
Repetitive apologies abuse –
I want to see offenders learn to care.
I need to watch your means to learn your ends,
so save the tropes and bromides for my friends.