to other gen z and millennials;

the noise, the grief, the terror
come sudden and aching—
take our breath, our thoughts, our senses away.
we don’t know how to stop faking
that we’re deaf, and have nothing to say.
and when the world is this loud,
isn’t it easier to keep quiet?
our voices would just get lost—
in the sea of cries,

and crying,

and trying.

after all,
the figureheads close their eyes,
plug their ears, and
send their thoughts and prayers
in singsong unison sighs.
there’s only one side to the story:
a boy fulfilled one of his nation’s biggest fears—
there couldn’t possibly be any more layers.
the world is so raw and
we can’t bear to touch its gaping wounds.
all we can hear are screams.
we just can’t take it,
we want to scream—
but isn’t it easier to keep quiet?
we have to breathe, because
we owe them this—
we can’t close our eyes,
plug our ears, or
send our thoughts and prayers
in singsong unison sighs.
we have to think about other sides to the story:
we have to look into the mirror,
and we need to show we care.
we have to listen.

we have to listen.

we have to listen.

we can’t surrender to the noise;
go quiet,
or go quietly.
we can’t go numb.

we have to feel,

and we have to scream.

This poem was written after the Florida school shooting, and yet it can be applied to more events than I can count. I
think that it’s pretty self-explanatory. Please think about what I said.

Written by Naia Lee
To see more of Naia’s work check out or @livehopelyfe on Instagram and Twitter, and follow Hopelyfe Movement on Facebook.
*All views expressed in this blog post belong to the authors and don’t necessarily reflect the views of CYH.