Left & Right

A poem by E.S.

There's a whisper in my left ear

It tells me to forget all the good things I hear

I find some strength in my little friend

This small helpful voice, my means to an end

It tells me to love myself and to care for only me

It assures me that freedom is mine for only a small fee

There's a whisper in my right ear

It tells me to shun evil and love the Lord

It reminds me of my past and cuts deep as a sword

I hate this voice; it makes me feel weak

But the thing about it is that it forces me to speak

Out of the left side of my mouth come words

Words that hate and shun and care for only me

Words that break me down and words that hurt everybody

Out of the right side of my mouth come words

Words that love and lift and learn and lead

Words that give and care and words that heed

My left hand has a cold bruise on it

It is there because I did not withhold to hit

To hit a wall in anger; to hit a friend in pain

I couldn't hold it back and now my hand holds a stain

My right hand has a cold bruise on it

It is there because I kept another from on their head being spit

It is there because I reached down through the thorns to pull a friend out of a pit

There are two sides of me that struggle to win

They work to have a hold on me; one keeping me a debtor to my sin

The other willing to set me free

So will I choose the left or the right?

Which will I be?