How do you expect a boy to be loved
In a place where the strongest currency is fear?
What does a sixteen year old boy say to a girl of just fifteen
Whose ears are only in tune to the frequency of voices
Belonging to those whose names synonymise with chaos?
How does he tell her that although his name is not the
Hottest in the streets, there is a volcano the size of a small lantern
In his chest that will keep her warm when winter’s torment descends
That will light her way when all other light is waterboarded by the night?
And even though the night is dark and full of terrors
The Vesuvius in his chest will summon the doom of Pompeii to keep her safe.
Who does a sixteen year old boy turn to for confirmation that the pure-of-heart
Is the better way? The better lifestyle because memories of a hollow-tip bullet
Piercing the rubbery barricade of skin and carving a fistful of flesh
Changes something in a boy that cannot be changed back.
What manner of monster, ghoul or nightmare does a sixteen year old need to become?
Who are the victims that will raise his stocks of fear? Since fear is the strongest currency here
And only those who are stocked up get their heart’s desire.
When will he see the counter productivity of being the devil incarnate
To win the heart of an angel?
How many strokes of the minute hand should a boy count
Before refusing to send a text that reads
‘There is shrine for you in the heart of my heart and my soul stands guard of it’
Who will tell him that there is another way? Another place where girls
Go for boys who draw strength from truth and kindness
Not boys that grow strong from harvesting fear from his brethren.
More pressingly, who will tell a fifteen year old girl that
She should not love for necessity. Ever.
When will she realise that being with a boy because everyone fears him
Does not make her safe but the most vulnerable she has ever been.
Who will show her that love is the better currency?
That loving yourself is the better investment
And saving yourself first is the better profit.
How will she train her ears to catch the faint tone of sincerity when
A boy tells her that he just wants to hold her, hold her close to him
So he too can feel what poets and songwriters feel when they speak of love.
In a place where the strongest currency is fear,
How will they know that there is a better economy?