What makes me tick
I haven't hands or a face
like a clock
Just gears in my head
slow and steady
whir and buzz
What labels on those gears, dear
Tell us how you work
sort you out
into little problems and boxes
tape 'em up
send 'em away
What are your emotions
Do you feel the pain
(it's for gain)
Give us the key to your mind
Unlock little bird
Open your cage
Why does anyone want to know
What I do, how are you, let me judge
No no, not that (boys won't like it)
Why? Why of course, everyone knows that!
Who is in here, in this head
Is it you, is this body your vessel?
You stammer and backpedal, that's not
What you meant. Just trying to help.
Why do you care so much
about all the wrong things
Yes I'll sleep with who I sleep with
it's none of your buisness who's in my bed
Why should you care what gender, how many --
Is it me or is it you inside this head?
Yes I'll say what I please, what I mean
so long as my muscles control these lips
I will shout to the rooftops my terrifying words
I don't need your judgement, advice, tips
No, what you should do, you should decide
to care about something really worthwhile
I could ink up my skin or have a hijab on
it shouldn't matter to you, find more relevant trials
Like the common cliché of the children in Africa
three words said too much to feel changable
Or the women who can't walk the streets alone
because apparently our bodies aren't really our own
Like the boys and girls raised to hate each other
bred to hate ourselves, too -- Don't be vain, they say.
What do you mean you think you're pretty?
How offensive! You cannot love yourself. 
Like the people who still, after all these years,
believe there is a superior race, a superior sex
A superior sexuality (there are 7), a superior dream
I can't fathom what they claim, what they mean
I guess that's what makes me tick
My jaw ticks in anger - at the ignorant
A tick is drummer slang for messing up
I watch the world tick around me
and I reach out my hands
I guess that's the label on these gears
I am a Dreamer, Thinker, Questioner
and I don't believe in Society
call me Tea Party call me Liberal
and I reach out my hands
I guess those are my emotions
Wanting to help, wanting to change
I feel tears around me, all the human beings
treated like they aren't people at all
and I reach out my hands
I  nto the darkness
T  rying to find that light
I   will find a way to save
C  an you help me bring back the world?
K  eep finding ourselves...
Do you?


Additional Resources

Get AI Feedback on your poem

Interested in feedback on your poem? Try our AI Feedback tool.


If You Need Support

If you ever need help or support, we trust CrisisTextline.org for people dealing with depression. Text HOME to 741741