Am I Blind?

I walk on,

Smiling as I toss some coins into the outstretched hand,

Self-conscious of my privilege, naturally I am,

Indignant if anyone were to question my motives,

I walk on,

Leaving the shadow of a mother clutching her emaciated baby against her dry breasts.

Am I blind?

As I spout hollow rhetoric,

As I scribble these words,

As I nod and agree and am shocked by the failure of the city council to get their act together,

I spout platitudes, over dinner conversations, as I shovel fillet mignon into my gaping mouth,

I bemoan the state of the nation, the Palestinian tragedy, the war against the poor,

As I chastise the waiter for fucking up my fillet mignon,

I bloody well ordered it medium-rare.

Am I blind?

I make polite conversation with people I can barely tolerate,

I laugh at the insipid jokes,

I listen to the raw racism,

The stabbing religious bigotry,

The hubris of knowing ‘the truth’.

Am I blind?

As I sip my Earl-Grey tea and butter my scones,

All the while pleasantly commenting on the failure of the government to do this or that.

Am I blind?

As I walk away,

Leaving the mother clutching her emaciated baby to her dry breasts.

Am I blind?

As I walk away,

From myself.

Am I blind?

As I walk away,

From my mother, and yours.

I walk away,

Alone.

Am I blind?

Willfully sightless?

Gleefully disco-deaf?

…So fuck the rest of the bleeding heart liberals,

Cos’ I pay my taxes,

And I break no laws,

Oh and I bloody well work hard,

I pay my way, god dammit!

Am I blind?