Tinderbox

Something quivers under his skin
Blood coursing barely contained
Hands fisted twitching to sink
Feet stamping barely restrained

“Give me back my pen
You stealer, you thief
I hate you godly men
You do not do as believed!”

“I’m just keeping it till end of class
Why this anger, why this fuss?
Told you not to stab in the past
Calm down, you’ll get it back, don’t cuss”

Hot tears run rivulets down his chin
Wild words hurl above the din
Such raw anger I have not seen
Just a 9 year old, but hurting mean

A pint sized mite, yet he unnerves me
Such distrust and defiance disturb me
How this ferocity came to be
What shaped this tinderbox before me

When did sweetness and light grow dim
And bright spirits turned a bitter dark tint
I feel inadequate and stupidly dim
To handle the young with eyes like flint

Some are worldly cynical wary
Others are bowed cowed weary
Many are raging bull angry
Almost all are hurting badly

Want to build you up, but you tear me down
Want to free your yoke, but you’re tightly bound
Have to turn you around, before you spiral down
Have to lift you up, before you hit the ground

Lord help me find the words
Lord help me heal the hurts
Lord help me show your words
That they’re not alone in their hurts.

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