Free as a bird

How can they say I am mentally ill?
I am not a gangster and I don't take drugs.

I have a speech impediment because
Of the motorcycle accident, but I am smart.

How can they believe the policemen's lies?
I don't dispute that we had an argument.

But there's no fighting the law and
Winning.  They've got the judge on their side.

I've been homeless.  Yes.  I've been hungry,
But I am used to living outside, free as a bird.

But they think they can help me by drugging me
With medications.  These medications are sedatives.

I am a little tightly wound.  I do get excited.
But that is my nature.  We're all God's children.

I am asked what are my plans for my life.  I just
Want to be free.  I want to get out of the hospital.

I am not a threat to anyone.  I can go to a shelter
When I'm hungry.  I'm used to skipping meals.

I am nobody's charity case.  I didn't ask for help.
The psychiatrist can screw himself.  I hate it here.

(c) Luis Cuauhtemoc Berriozabal 2002
Luis Cuauhtemoc Berriozabal

Lives in Los Angeles County, California and works in the mental health field. His first book of poems, Raw Materials, is shortly to be published by Pygmy Forest Press.