Skip to main content

You Are Not Awful

Kari is a compassionate and empathetic individual. She loves the earth and all its life. She is a believer in the dignity of each of us.

Girl looking through rain-streaked window.

Girl looking through rain-streaked window.

Supporting the Underdogs

I have always supported the underdog. As a teenager I could not figure out why my life was so good while others' lives were so difficult and unpleasant. I felt guilty about this fact.

As I grew older I stopped feeling as guilty about having a good life. My life became marred by many difficult and painful experiences. I refused to let these times hamper my happiness. However, this refusal drains me of my energy.

I find myself less able to fight for the underdogs of this world. I still care, but it is harder to stand up for them. The problems seem so big and I seem so small.


I become overwhelmed by the needs of others. I need to look at things sideways because seeing the truth head-on causes me pain. I squint at reality using tunnel vision, hazing out the edges of the picture, trying to cope with the truth.

All those cliches about truth are correct. Truth is cold and stark. But truth is both cruel and loving. We give each other the truth because we care.

So often it seems we do not care. But, in reality, we care too much. We do not like the feelings of helplessness caring causes us. So, we look away.

You Are Not Awful

I don't look away because you are awful.

I look away because of the pain the sight gives me.

I know that could be me but for the varies of life.

I don't close my ears because you have nothing to say.

I close my ears because what you say hurts too much to hear.

I don't remain silent because I don't care.

I remain silent because the task of saving you is so big.

I don't know where to start, or how long till it ends.

Your hurt makes me feel small and helpless.

So I look away.

I close my ears, and

I remain silent.

Hoping your hurt is not catching,

I go my own way.


I feel bad because I have less energy to stick up for the downtrodden of this world. I still try to help the outsiders, but I think I begin to turn away too often. Compassion seems harder now than when I was younger.

© 2021 Kari Poulsen

Related Articles