Photo Challenge #221 – Indifference Reigns


Image credit Mattias Milos via Unsplash


Do you think you can step through?

Forty years of confinement is no small potatoes.


A bell rings:

You awake, get up, toilet, dress, stand to attention.

Awaiting permission to move, to think, to live.


You’re used to the four walls

You know how to obey orders without thinking.


A bell rings:

Doors open, you join the line, single file

The kitchen is alive, pans clash, indifference reigns.


Can you step through, do you think?

There’s a world without order out there.


A bell rings:

Line up at the food counter, accept what you are given

Sit at the same table you have for forty years.


How will cope with choices, making decisions?

A life of obedience, of sameness, ties you down.


A bell rings:

You depart for your room, morning ablutions done

Preparations for same shit different day.


You’d look lovely in a floral dress, flowers suit you

Be a change you think from the drab green.


A bell rings:

You file out to the laundry, wash the crap from the desperate

Scrub the tears and solitude from every green garment.


You smile, and your face lights up

How have you hidden it all these years?


A bell rings:

The day ends, you repeat the same actions

Walk the same steps, indifference thrives.


Do you think you can step out?

Make a change, or is it too late?


Written for:


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9 Responses to Photo Challenge #221 – Indifference Reigns

  1. Metaphorically this is why I will be starting a new job this year. Can’t get caught up in the same mundane pattern. But I am definitely fearful of my ability to live up to new expectations. What if it is lacking?

    • Michael says:

      We all feel like that in a new job. When I started at an academic school I kept thinking for the first year that I’d get a call from someone high up saying they’d made a mistake and I should go back to where I came from. But hang in there, every school as you know is different. Talk to your students, not at them.

  2. calmkate says:

    wow some people’s lives … released prisoners face huge mental health issues with too many choices, as might someone living a regimented lifestyle eg ex-service people who must obey orders … 😦

  3. Vivian Zems says:

    I love the thought process here, mustering up the courage to walk through the fence, yet terrified that all the order and routine of prison would be gone. A scary thought.

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