Invisible Chains

The thing about invisible chains-

they can’t be seen.

You know they are there (those wearing them, that is)

but the world doesn’t.


Like the chains on the ghost of Jacob Marley,

they often grow as life goes on.

There are people who get a key at birth,

those born a certain way,

(male, white, upper middle to upper class)

usually avoid them altogether.

Other people,

(female, minority, low class, not straight, different)

aren’t so lucky.

The invisible bonds grow, thicken, increase in length.

Links added by circumstance, situation, other people.


The other thing about invisible chains-

if others can’t see, can’t feel them,

they refuse to believe.

Because why would it matter to them?

They never saw them,

they worked “just as hard”,

got twice as far.

People without invisible chains just don’t get it.

Lucky ducks- “ignorance is bliss” and all.

Ignorance adds to the chain, to the burden.

Helps push down more people.


Who is worse?

Those who are ignorant?

Or those who know already?

And then the ones who know that chains weigh you down.

Running is hard with all the extra weight,

so many chains.


And defense?

Protecting the weak?

Just watch the news.

Somehow invisible chains are a stigma,

even if they “aren’t there”.

Blaming the wearer of chains,

often for the actions of the free, as well as their own.


Invisible chains are everywhere.

People are trying to bring them into the light-

paint them to show their existence,

along with words, actions, and awareness.

Perhaps one day, someone will come with bolt cutters,

and at last the chains will litter the floor-

doing nothing, going nowhere-

but pipe dreams rarely come true.

If nothing else, a file in the hands of the chained

can work away at a few.


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