Poetry by Farah Lawal Harris

Life Play


*Written July 7, 2008*

why do you play with my life, baby?
you enter and leave my presence as if my heart were an airport
and you have stocked up on frequent flier miles.
why do you play with my life, baby
as if i were a joyful infant
anxiously awaiting your face, your touch, your care?
i am not a toy, i am not a fly outfit,
i am not that old favorite pair of sneaks in the back of your closet
that you pull out from time to time because you miss them.
i am a woman. i have needs
which don’t include riding on your every whim,
hanging on to your every word,
adjusting to your every mood,
answering your every call,
accepting all of your mistakes.
i am no fool, at least not anymore.
i refuse to stay stagnant, to allow my heart to jump
when you decide to pick up the phone and check on me.
my life is worth so much more than an “I miss you” every three months or so.
my life is worth love, companionship, acceptance, encouragement, sacrifice,
love, love, and love
not your poor excuses for life, for your mishaps in the past
that to you were just slips but to me stabs.
go play with someone else’s life or better yet your own.
look in the mirror and put yourself down,
neglect you, lie to yourself, require and demand too much of yourself,
take up all of your own time, ruin your own credit, cheat on yourself,
get locked up and visit yourself every weekend,
disappoint yourself, ignore yourself,
insult yourself and make yourself cry and then
after you’ve done all that
ask you to get back with you and see what the answer is.
play with your own life, baby
cuz mine is too serious for that.
it’s much too precious for me to get involved in your haphazard games
so despite all you have done, i will love you but from a distance
but
you cannot play with my life, baby.

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