A sneer, disdainful look,
laughter, humiliation. The
fear of shame cuts deeply.
Not good enough, different,
too much, too little — who
has not had to face this fear,
real or otherwise?
I still remember cruel playground
taunts sixty years later, parties
where no one asked me to dance,
so many times when I felt I was
“not good enough.” It is only
in my later years that I learned
how to douse the fire of shame…
yet it can still singe me at times.