us and them

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At the moment it becomes
“us” and “them”
we’ve lost.
we’ve thrown in the towel.
we’ve waived the white flag.
we’ve thrown the grenade.
we’ve waged the war.
we’ve fired the shot.
we’ve sold our sole.
we’ve eaten the fruit.

At the moment it becomes
“us” and “them”
we’ve allowed ourselves
the illusion that we aren’t all connected
the illusion that we aren’t all the same
the illusion that we aren’t all both Cain and Abel
the illusion that we aren’t all both perpetrator and victim
the illusion that we aren’t all,
ultimately,
the best and the worst of ourselves.

So at the moment that we choose
to buy into the lie
that it’s “us” and “them”
we buy into the lie
that we can treat others in ways
we would never allow our own to be treated.
that we can make choices for us that have consequences
we would never allow ourselves to be the recipient of.
that we can speak in ways that objectify others to an extent
we would never allow for those we love.

So at the moment that we choose
to buy into the lie
that it’s “us” and “them”
whether defined
by race
by income
by status
by guilt
by geography
by belief
by doctrine
by ideology
by education
by gender
by any of the other illusions of separateness that have
proven to be crutches since we
stabbed each other in the back when it all began
it is in that moment that
the very “us” we are hoping to protect
is lost to a state of
otherness that we thought
we were guarding against all the while.

At that moment,
we lose what we thought we were fighting for.

djordan
Pine Tree

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