You want me to talk of love and rain,

When my heart and soul bleed with pain,

Forced to pass my days with vampires,

How can you expect me to be sane.

Passing by the sea I sigh with the waves,

How ugly has become Earth's face,

You want me to cajole and laugh,

I want the Trumpet to end my race.

You talk of dinners and banquets,

I see hungry kids begging,

You want just to dine and dance,

Have I got time for romance?

You love to shop and be frivolous,

Like Cossette and Marius,

Know you not that I am Jean Valjean,

My torn and tattered coat is famous.

They raped a wronged girl today,

And yet your eyes want me to play,

They said she must be punished,

Won't my heart and head turn gray?

You say you are just one of the crowd,

I say I am the defiant one,

One who can't forget the sword,

If a soul is victim of the proud.

Even I long to live and love,

Sing my songs of Spring with doves,

Recite poems to nightingales,

And with my heart's joy revive my vows.

But I have very little time,

My pen is the sword that rhymes,

I am never without my weaponry,

To erase evil artistry...

So, when I pass by the sea and gaze,

Everything is covered with haze,

Let my heart and mind pause and think,

Let my blood colour my quill and ink...

Author's Notes/Comments: 

Composed on July 4, 2002. Inspired by Deborah Russell's replies to some of my poems. This is an appeal not a rebuttal. Jean Valjean, Cossette and Marius are characters of Victor Hugo's famous novel Les Miserables. Jean Valjean is the central character who suffers throughout the story for the sake of the ones he loves. Cossette is his adopted daughter and Marius is Cossette's lover.

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Man's Deceit

When the pen begins to scratch and skip
And repeats in line, words that make you trip,
Do they not juxtapose the edges of reality?
Or, capture but the sorrows of your lip?

I too pass by many seas, then sigh and weep.
Yes the world is ugly when love is put to sleep
I used to laugh, be carefree and feel so safe
But troubled is my mind and worry runs quite deep.

You tell me your sorrows are grave and true
Yet my heart has been betrayed just like you
We have children begging in our streets as well
Do you believe this is the romance that I pursue?

It's correct, I shop, but frivolous, that's not true
Your perspective is colored by a primitive view
I rise to offer assistance to any one, when I can
And live my life doing the best that I can do

I don't claim to know how to right the wrong
I can't brag or boast to write the perfect song
My life is small and worthless in this scheme
A world contrived of man's deceit each day long

Deborah Russell © 2002