Always and Always the Two Voices

by joelmckerrow

I took myself apart this weekend. Blossomed vulnerable onto a stage. It is not often that I share of my inner voice. Well, of one of my inner voices. The OTHER one.

Always and always the two voices.

The one that tells me I am enough

and the OTHER.

The affirmation that I give myself

and the OTHER.

Whispers of courage

and the OTHER.

Every day every day two voices

and how I would love to silence the louder.

But he is always there,

in the background,

waiting, biding time, until he is not. Then he is yelling and tormenting and shouting.

Whispers of brave courage become so hard to hear in his loud demands.

So, this weekend, in the midst of performing and giving and opening and creating, in the midst of friends and stories and people who inspire,in the midst I found myself listening, to the OTHER.

He was telling me of the many, many people who are doing so much more than I and he was telling me how words are never enough and how poetry can never be that which truly changes a life or a moment or a world and he was telling me how I am only ‘just a poet.’

And I listened.

And I drew away,

for a moment.


This is why I need you. This is why you need me. This. Right here.

She saw me. I let her. I told her of the OTHER. She laughed at it. Reminded me of who I was. The OTHER retreated. I walked away taller. Straight to him, who told me what he saw in me. Told me he had been watching, not my performance, not my words, but the lives of people touched, the ones changed, the ones now changing others. Straight up. Two voices. One after the other. They drew iron into my back. They silenced the OTHER. I did not ask them for it. But I needed them for it. So with a renewed back bone, I gave myself. Blossomed vulnerable onto the stage. I shared confession. She heard it, the woman who needed it, she heard it and she wept and in her tears she found healing and she told me. In the force of her words the OTHER declared a surrender. So I told them about him from the stage. Blossomed vulnerable once more. Shed skin. Let them see into the doubt, let them hear the inner voices. Shone a light on the OTHER. He did not like the light. The audience did. They came and told me of their OTHER. I helped them silence her. This is why I need you. This is why you need me. This. Right here. And this was the weekend and today is a new day and again there are two voices but its a little easier today. The OTHER sits in the dark and lonely room and there he sulks. Quietly.