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Someone out there is not letting me be myself

Someone is pulling my strings
saying I can’t
saying I shouldn’t
do this, don’t do that
be here, be there
not possible
your role
not right
how could you
you’re wrong

Someone out there is not letting me be myself
a boss-master
planner with a plan
wise one who knows what’s best
but is limiting
and off the mark

Someone out there is not letting me be myself
Who is that gremlin?
that outdated mask of propriety
that velvet cage of security and surety
voices of mostly good intentions
expectations spoken and unspoken

Someone out there with certainty of who I was to be
and I, the Bounty towel, absorbing so completely
too many voices from too many tribesmen
and tribeswomen
clinging cobwebs in my mind
paralyzing fears in my gut

It’s not that they were wrong
or meant me harm
it’s just that I’m stronger now
can stand on my own now
need to grow now
beyond the limitations

I choose my way, mistakes, learning, path, life, meaning, light
and no longer ask permission
I choose the courage to be who I am
under all the hesitations, expectations and flawed beliefs
even my own

I am listening to my soul
not who or what I was supposed to be
according to Hoyle or Whomever

It is a scary place to be
without a crutch

Someone out there was me
I gave it away
past tense
no more

About time