Broken Boy Songs


Coming inside

from a cold, hard day

out there again.

We live it

through a window,

a screen

or a story told.

You step back in

and we don’t even know

how long you’ve been gone.

You’re dirty and tired,

singing your broken boy song.

They all gather around

to hear what you have to say.

It seems that the stories

help to heal you a little bit, anyway.

We see the scars,

and the tears,

but I watch in their eyes

as they hear

you speak about facing your fears.

This is how it’s been done

since the beginning.

One starts to play,

and then the other

broken boys come along.

They all take turns

singing their broken boy songs.

The young men hear them

and long to be strong,

while the old men

help each one carry on.

Scar tissue,


and good friends gone.

The fire burns bright

as it has since the first dawn.

Young men learn

at the feet

of those who’ve learned defeat,


and the truth about right and wrong.

We try to fix them,

but the wounds

go too deep to stitch them.

Down to the bone.

Right through their souls.

Only way to diminish them

seems to be,

that if they come back at all,

we listen to them sing

their broken boy songs.

Maybe it’s the only way

any of the pain

passes at all.



DJR – 2023

Leave a Reply