Heroism Does Not Necessarily Equate to Morality

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BY SOFIA SEARS

Sofia is a writer, poet, and American history enthusiast from California.

"This poem was written my freshman year, when we studied the Odyssey in English class. I intended for it to echo the traits of a classic hero, such as Odysseus, in an insidious way, because heroism does not necessarily equate to morality." 

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an animal is one who is wild

who is a hurricane,

no, no, no

never a raindrop

one who is a secret maelstrom of discordance

but pulls it together with the necessity of a leader

an animal is one who can free themselves

without burning themselves

but one who,

in doing this astonishing and impressive act,

cages others

kindly, of course

an animal is one who can be trained

but never dominated

by more than one definite master

the coldest calculations

instilled subconsciously

into the animal’s impassive little mind

an animal is one who can tighten the reins

but never loosen them

one who can breathe fire into a situation

as if the situation is a broken dragon

regulating the memories

of the prelapsarian era

an animal is one who will roar the most formidable of roars

but only, only, when critical

the brightest stars never seem to last the longest

that’s what animals know

an animal is one who can break the rules

without a crippling guilt

who can eat the weaklings of the pack

without a stomachache

an animal is one who will see the edenic purity of the world

but who will never be able to bask in it,

rather, only see it

and smile an optimistic

and broken smile

an animal is one who will hold the patience of a saint

yet know the thoughts of a devil

it will never be enough to be good

an animal will suffer nothing less

than unadulterated greatness

an animal will know to free the privileged

and best to disguise the insidious control

of the peasants

as a blessing, a blanket of equality

despite the truth

that there is no such thing

an animal will smell the blood of the quietest lambs

and weep heinously in its slumber

but never, never, show the others

the cracks within its shield

it will only put on a gorgeously grieving face

and hold the head high, higher than the Eiffel tower

to announce the kingdom is stronger

stronger than steel

an animal will be every strength and more,

and never let its flaws define him

the animal will silence the stirring of the pot

or the end of a thousand heartbeats

or the burning of a palace

with three simple words

He sees all.”

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You can read more of Sears' work here.

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