Were I to swim in front of the in-laws,
My tattoos exposed for the world to see,
How would they look upon it?
What would their reactions be?
Would I be seen as dangerous?
Or might principled be conveyed?
Would classless come to mind?
More like drawing respect or dismay?
On an island, I would feel confident,
Taking pride in my cutting-edge art.
But I exist in a conventional world;
The herd and I see it miles apart.
Two of my brothers take a similar tack,
Both recognizing similar aspirations.
Though alone and unique in this world,
They possess the wisdom to lead nations.
Perhaps if this world were peaceful,
And love ruled as now do mere boys,
I would not be wearing these scarlet letters,
But living with my brethren amongst joy.
So while I ought to summon tolerance,
And I do not want to seem holier than thou,
If one of the in-laws were a better person than I,
Before his or her greatness would I surely bow.
Here is a poem that is somewhat in the same vein, entitled “The Truly Noble Man.” They both deal with themes of honor, principles, values, aspirations, society, societal expectations, and self-definition.
“The Scarlet Letters” © Jason Merchey 1999-2018