Deserted and abandoned youth

Choose certain death and ostracism
Exile self-imposed; ‘tradition’
Loss of home and family
Born of faith’s supremacy

So young, with minds not fully fed
In fear of first missteps, unled
Some seek to live by others’ rules
And hope to never have to choose

While those whose choice was thrust upon
Unwary shoulders, far too young
Have just enough experience
To recognise their own good sense

And knowing that some errors will
Occur despite intentions, still
Are less afraid to persevere
And build the life they want right here.

Though actions have their aftermath
There is no righteous, clear-cut path
Please do not fear all consequence
Change is not dangerous; though dense

And unenlightened elders may
Feel life no longer goes their way
As age and distance emphasise
The loss of youth before sad eyes

Unready to relinquish reins
To those in throes of growing pains.
Decisions to abandon trust
Give up hope and freedoms; lust

For life of lesser contemplation
Out of social obligation;
Turn to ends more violent
Ignore suggestions, kindly meant

And quick condemn all other views –
Is this the path you wish to choose?
Consider this, before you do
For truly, this choice rests with you:

Such suicide invites abuse
Of others that may follow blood
For love, for family, for feud
Will throw themselves away; – jihad

In mourning for those gone before
Their minds made waste, still immature
And more than one will idolise
The first to die – if death you prize

Above the life you hold in hand
So understand, if you have planned
To be the martyr for your tribe
And leave the others still alive

The minute you take up this course
Imagining rewards; Firdaws
You lose control of what is shown
And once you’ve gone, the whole thing’s blown:

With ashes scattered over sand
Your image will be used to brand
Misinformation into truth –
Deserted and abandoned youth.

The boy who didn’t believe

His eyes told him tales of the truth on the page
As he gazed on in wonder at what lay before him

His ears let him hear all that came from the sage
While faithful companions took care to inform him

His hands brushed the wisdom both carved out and clear
And his touch held reminders of tangible reason

While tongue on his teeth flicked out, tasting the air
For a hint of the wind lends direction and season

But all was in vain, all fine senses quite useless
He wrinkled his nose and refused to be swayed

Afeared that his fellows might mean him abuses
He shut his mind tight and ignored all good faith

In place of his conscience mistook for conviction
The volume of ignorance over all proof

Provoking confusion and much needless friction
For stubborn and wilful his painful excuse

Respect slowly dwindled to fall by the wayside
While fatuous rhetoric ruled in its place

Contempt for authority lacking in substance
All those his compatriots filled with dismay

No lessons were learned by the boy in the bubble
Preferring his policy of Simon says

He polished the rod that he’d careful constructed
Preparing to swing to the end of his days