Poetry

He Saw Himself in Numbers

Photo Credit: trindade.joao. Licensed CC-BY.
Photo Credit: trindade.joao.
Licensed CC-BY.

He saw himself in numbers,
statistics, facts, logic.
He saw himself in numbers
that toyed with his mind. 
  
The IQ emblazoned
across his forehead
didn’t tell of the eloquent
nature of his thoughts.
   
The vocabulary count
written on his lips
didn’t mention the convivial
nature of his lay.
   
The measures of his shoulders,
muscles, waist circumfrence,
were ignorant of his frame’s
skinny beauty.
    
The anxious number written
across his weathered worry-finger
said nothing of the friends
and family he worried for.
    
He saw himself in numbers. 
That is true, and only logical; 
numbers cannot lie
but they are not the only logical explanation.
   
Or perhaps, simple logic
is not the only
explanation,
For I saw him, in

the creases round his eyes
that showed how many times he smiled
and how he stared at the sun
even though it hurt.
   
I saw him in the geraniums by my house
because he forgot to buy me flowers once
so he picked them, all special,
and my mum was so mad. 
   
I saw him as his hair, 
floppy, messy, black,
a crow’s nest that was
surprisingly soft. 
   
I’d hoped that he’d forget the numbers.
I really, truly did. 
But they subsumed him into facts,
The figures, the abyss.


Originally printed at Protagonize.