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Eleven Poems by Valynn

April 2010

I am a 44-year-old female from Tampa, Fla. These are very short poems written many years ago, when there was little hope. I was infected in 1985 and the years that followed were the darkest I had ever experienced. In 1991, I had less than 50 T cells, was diagnosed with AIDS, and found myself homeless with no hope. Today, I am about to graduate with a second master's degree and I have hope not only for my own future, but the future of all individuals living with HIV.

In the Darkness (1991)

So many have marched in our madness
So many have felt our pain
Why do we isolate
Why do we blame
Ourselves in the darkness

The Next (1991)

Many have died - many have prayed for death
The victims sit in silence - waiting to pass
Pass to the next step, the here after
We leave this existence and prepare for the next.

Silence (1991)

The silent war is on
One that few speak of
But one that is felt by many
It kills all that are afflicted
Showing no mercy - no compassion
Just pain

But (1991)

You can't hear the enemy,
But You can hear the screams of the infected
You can't touch the enemy
But You can touch its victims
You can't see the enemy
But You can see its devastation

Time (1991)

Time is of the essence
Time is what we have
We make of it what we can

Day by Day (1991)

Day by day
We stay and play
This little game called life
We wake and breathe we wash and leave
To something we don't like
Eat and sleep, work and play
Or just waste away

Time will Tell (1992)

I never thought
I'd see the day
When eyes saw deeper than reality
Bad met good, young met old
The door is open will you fall inside
Turn out the light
Tune out your mind
Hear nothing that is said
Close your eyes hide inside
Time will tell your end

Beep Beep (1992)

Beep, Beep, Beep, "hold"
Food sucks
Service is slow
We do our best
Nightmares-joy-love-the silent war
You have to vent
Let it out
Direct your anger
Deal with it
Waiting to die - we all will pass
When it is our time
Free of pain, of guilt, of humiliation.

Charlie (1992)

The things we shared
The things we taught each other
The knowledge, the power the courage
We shared funny moments, sad moments
Even moments of pain
We know that this is not the end
It is only a change
There are many stages of life
We progress from one to the next
Learning every step of the way
Since we met
My life has changed
I no longer find joy in pain
There is time to play, time to learn
There is time to cry, feel the pain
We dance in elevators, cried at awkward moments
We joked and almost always got into mischief
Bubbles, smiles, love, song, dance, and prayer
Pain humiliation, isolation, discrimination, victimization
They balance each other, experience all

I Never Thought (August 1995)

I never thought I'd live to see my 30th birthday
I never thought I'd live to see my brother turn 30
I never thought I'd live to see myself back in college
I never thought I'd live to see the purchase of my own condo
I never thought I'd see my life so full of energy

For Not (March 28, 1996)

My life seems to be nothing more than existing.
I wake every morning no enthusiasm to live
No plans for the future, no plans for the day
Nothing to look forward to
Eat, sleep, breathe
Nothing brings me joy
In this vast world of technology, nothing to empower my mind or my will to continue
Day in, day out the same
No parades, no parties, no celebration
Life is but an existence for who
For me
For not

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This article was provided by 2010 Poetry Month at

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