We exchange pleasantries online or on the town;
you’ve read my poetry and perhaps you have found
some similarity between yourself and me,
but you don’t know me.
We talk of politics or turns that life may make;
something I say perhaps prevents a new mistake;
but nonetheless it’s wrong, because you’ve heard my song
to think you know me.
How could you know unless you’ve felt my pain,
from a life that is not your own?
All that you have is your experience;
not my life – that is mine alone.
We’ve shared a meal or two, maybe a glass of wine;
not quite enough to know just where to draw the line.
I’ve not been in your shoes; you’ve never sung my blues,
so you don’t know me.
Almost acquaintances: that’s all we really are;
I wouldn’t push the definition all that far
without me cheapening what should be deepening:
no, you don’t know me.
How could you know what makes me tick inside
in a day, or brief afternoon?
There’s more to me than shallow “seem-to-be’s”,
that simple melody is not my tune.
We’ve only just begun to plumb the hidden depths;
as far as I’m concerned sometimes, it seems we’ve barely met.
There’s so much I don’t know about you, and I know
that you don’t know me.
My number’s on speed dial, and yours is likewise stored;
but it’s a simple truth, and cannot be ignored:
you want to call me friend, but just “sort of” pretend.
Well, you don’t know me.
26 JUN 2006