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©2018 Barren Magazine. An Alt.Lit Introspective.

Where Do People Draw the Line in Hurting Others in Pursuit of Their Own Happiness

by Ace Boggess

What the drugs do,
what fear of a break-up
leads us to & back—
no matter suits we wear,
what textbook recitations tell us,
we are wild, not far from ape-ness,
fish nature, single-celled self-
desire to halve & run from that.
Higher mind makes us more
aware of baser pulls,
not just the act but want:
perfumed scents of ambition
replacing urine on a tree.
What stops us is sadness
of the other. Call it guilt,
evolution’s flaw
mocking from classrooms
where withered professors
explain the word ‘alone.’

Header photograph © Jason D. Ramsey.

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