Thay tells me he is a twelve-year-old girl, refugee on a small boat, who throws herself into the ocean after being raped by a sea pirate. And my heart expands. He is a frog, swimming in a lake and also the grass snake, eating the frog. And my heart expands. We pray on the Jewish Holy days with our German friends, and he asks me to find the non-Hitler parts of Hitler and the Hitler parts in me. And my heart expands.
know I am the teenage boy murdered in Mississippi, And I am the white-hooded murderer, smug in disguise. I am the black-haired girl from Laguna Pueblo, molested from birth by her father, uncles, grandpa, and I am those men, hopeless. I am the campesino, tending beehives in Guatemala, And I am the soldier who executes him. And my heart expands.
I am a twelve-year-old boy, a can of nails hurled at my head And I am his mother, unable to help or stop his leaving home, as I whirl away to avoid being hit by a pot of spaghetti hot from the stove, which decorates my chairs with red and white streamers before it clatters and rolls on the floor.
And I am the man overflowing with rage, who throws his anger at the people he loves. And my heart expands to contain his suffering Even while I say NO, at the risk of my life.