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Pretend It's not a Road to Nowhere

Updated on July 14, 2015
Larry Rankin profile image

Larry Rankin, an experiened writer, enjoys creative writing in all forms, from literary to mainstream.

Source

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Pretend it’s not a road to nowhere, and maybe they won’t hate you.

Lie and deny.

Fill their heads with hopes and dreams of a something.

Believe them, like you know they’re true.

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Pretend it’s not a road to nowhere, and maybe they won’t hate you.

But I’m low today, and the low is deep.

Don’t let them know.

They’ll hate you for it.

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Pretend it’s not a road to nowhere, and maybe they won’t hate you.

Tell them there’s a goal, that life has meaning.

Scream the truth into your pillow at night.

If you hold it tight enough, they won’t hear you.

Source

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Pretend it’s not a road to nowhere, and maybe they won’t hate you.

Talk of hope and God and justice,

Of humanity and other made up things,

Of whatever fills the void and makes people think that yes, this is a real thing and it matters.

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Pretend it’s not a road to nowhere, and maybe they won’t hate you.

Proclaim we exist; don’t let them know we don’t.

Speak on high of fire and brimstone,

Because even that is more comforting than the utter emptiness of reality.

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Pretend it’s not a road to nowhere, or surely they will hate you,

Even though I suspect they all already know,

If we acknowledge it, then what?

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Pretend it’s not a road to nowhere. Please, I’m begging you!

Deep down it’s all a big nothing,

But for lunacy’s sake, don’t be the one that says it.

Source

Author's Note:

The above poem was inspired by the Bill Holland Challenge "The Door to Nowhere."

Opinion

4.3 out of 5 stars from 6 ratings of "Pretend It’s not a Road to Nowhere."

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    • FatBoyThin profile image

      Colin Garrow 23 months ago from Kinneff, Scotland

      This is good - I really like the format you've chosen and your use of repetition. Watch your spelling though ;-)

    • Larry Rankin profile image
      Author

      Larry Rankin 23 months ago from Oklahoma

      FatBoyThin: Me and homonyms, lol. I have a Masters in English, and I still make missteps. Was also quite tired this morning and my proofreader was asleep, but enough with excuses.

      Thanks for dropping by.

    • Buildreps profile image

      Buildreps 23 months ago from Europe

      Wow, this is really good, Larry! I like the way you took Bill's challenge.

    • Larry Rankin profile image
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      Larry Rankin 23 months ago from Oklahoma

      Buildreps: I appreciate the praise and I am glad you enjoyed it.

    • drbj profile image

      drbj and sherry 23 months ago from south Florida

      Very imaginative, Larry. Thank you. Your premise also accurately describes most speeches by politicians these days.

    • billybuc profile image

      Bill Holland 23 months ago from Olympia, WA

      Like others, I love the use of repetition. Powerful poetry....strong message...great response to my challenge, Larry. I totally enjoyed this, and I thank you for taking part in the challenge. Well done, my friend.

    • Larry Rankin profile image
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      Larry Rankin 23 months ago from Oklahoma

      Dr: thanks for dropping by and the positive comments.

    • Larry Rankin profile image
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      Larry Rankin 23 months ago from Oklahoma

      Bill: thanks for dropping by. I'm glad you found the poem interesting.

    • Jodah profile image

      John Hansen 23 months ago from Queensland Australia

      Wow Larry, what a unique response to Bill's challenge. I like this..could almost be made into a song. Good work.

    • Larry Rankin profile image
      Author

      Larry Rankin 23 months ago from Oklahoma

      Jodah: thanks for dropping by. It does have a lyrical quality, but I think it would take quite a lot of work for it to follow a tune.

    • MizBejabbers profile image

      MizBejabbers 23 months ago

      It's very powerful. How despondent, but if one pretends long enough, he just may believe it. This is a great response to Bill's challenge.

    • Larry Rankin profile image
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      Larry Rankin 23 months ago from Oklahoma

      Miz Bejabbers: I was going for dark here. Someone out of hope.

      Thanks so much for the comment.

    • Emese Fromm profile image

      EmeseRéka 23 months ago from The Desert

      I enjoyed this. It was a unique response to the challenge, great poem!

    • Larry Rankin profile image
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      Larry Rankin 23 months ago from Oklahoma

      Emese: thank you.

    • BlossomSB profile image

      Bronwen Scott-Branagan 23 months ago from Victoria, Australia

      imaginative and interesting.

    • Larry Rankin profile image
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      Larry Rankin 23 months ago from Oklahoma

      Blossom: thanks for stopping by.

    • Mel Carriere profile image

      Mel Carriere 23 months ago from San Diego California

      Wow, it sounds like an existential crisis to me. I think it's time to break out the snuff can, my friend. No, of course I'm kidding! Your descent into nihilism here was refreshing creative and I liked the way the meter bounced along. You have the poetic instinct. Great hub!

    • Larry Rankin profile image
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      Larry Rankin 23 months ago from Oklahoma

      Mel: I think in our darkest moments most of us descend into what we fear most, and I think for many of us it's a sense of nihilism. You pegged it. That's what I'm going on about here.

      Whether your belief is organized faith or science or agnosticism or atheism or some combination, at least it's not nothingness. Meaninglessness, now that's scary.

      Thanks for dropping by.

    • AliciaC profile image

      Linda Crampton 23 months ago from British Columbia, Canada

      This is a dark and powerful hub, Larry. It's a very interesting and creative response to Bill's challenge.

    • Larry Rankin profile image
      Author

      Larry Rankin 23 months ago from Oklahoma

      Alicia: thanks for the kind words.

    • Mel Carriere profile image

      Mel Carriere 23 months ago from San Diego California

      Well said, so true. Never really considered that. Even non belief is a belief system.

    • aviannovice profile image

      Deb Hirt 23 months ago from Stillwater, OK

      Not being one for false promises, I nodded my head as I read, and it sure sounded like politics to me. Good work.

    • Larry Rankin profile image
      Author

      Larry Rankin 23 months ago from Oklahoma

      Avian Novice: sure seems that way sometimes. Thanks for the comment.

    • Nadine May profile image

      Nadine May 23 months ago from Cape Town, Western Cape, South Africa

      Larry this is a creative response to Bill's challenge. I just have no time to join the challenge.

    • Larry Rankin profile image
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      Larry Rankin 23 months ago from Oklahoma

      Nadine: thanks so much for the comments.

    • grand old lady profile image

      Mona Sabalones Gonzalez 23 months ago from Philippines

      I love your poem, even if the ending is very sad.

    • Larry Rankin profile image
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      Larry Rankin 23 months ago from Oklahoma

      Grand Old Lady: thanks for the comment. I'm glad you enjoyed it.

    • cam8510 profile image

      Chris Mills 23 months ago from St. Louis, MO until the end of June, 2017

      Perfect ending for an outstanding poem. I like how each verse was a coherent, stand alone piece. Sometimes in poetry, I find that lines within verses are disjointed and unrelated. I appreciate the work it took to keep them unified.

      The ending was a spark of genius.

      "But for lunacy’s sake, don’t be the one that says it."

      That sentence takes a series of stand alone verses and unites them wonderfully. Great job.

      I'm going to post this on my facebook page for freelance writers. https://www.facebook.com/cam8510?ref=hl

    • Larry Rankin profile image
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      Larry Rankin 23 months ago from Oklahoma

      Cam: I hardly feel worthy of such high praise. Thanks so much for the kind words.

    • temptor94 profile image

      Ritu Temptor 23 months ago from India

      Beautiful and very deep! Really touches the inner melancholy that we bear within us, indeed there's nothing at the end of it and yet we continue to live in denial. Loved your poem!

    • Larry Rankin profile image
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      Larry Rankin 23 months ago from Oklahoma

      Temptor: thanks for dropping by. I'm glad you got something out of the poem. Certainly a darker piece.

    • SANJAY LAKHANPAL profile image

      Sanjay Sharma 23 months ago from Mandi (HP) India

      The abstract things need nihilistic treatment and you have marvelously achieved the effect.

    • Larry Rankin profile image
      Author

      Larry Rankin 23 months ago from Oklahoma

      Sanjay: thanks for the positive comments.

    • Harishprasad profile image

      Harish Mamgain 23 months ago from India

      Larry, this is a very fine poem. People die for these pretensions, but aren't ready to face the reality on their own. You are right, lives of most of the people is made up. Thank you for this thought provoking poem. A great response to Bill Holland 's challenge.

    • Larry Rankin profile image
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      Larry Rankin 23 months ago from Oklahoma

      Harishprasad: thanks for the positive feedback.

    • Jackie Lynnley profile image

      Jackie Lynnley 22 months ago from The Beautiful South

      Oops; I think this is the first challenge to this I have read. Glad I came across it, very good, very deep. Sad.

      Great work, poetry is so great to let us express ourselves and I am glad I found HP to find that out. ^+

    • Larry Rankin profile image
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      Larry Rankin 22 months ago from Oklahoma

      Jackie: thanks so much for the kind words.

    • the rawspirit profile image

      Robert Morgan 22 months ago from Hutchinson Island, FL - Myrtle Beach, SC - Scottsdale AZ

      OK, Let's get back to sports statists, lol. Kidding aside this is a poem that makes me want to read it over and over. Double checking my sanity. What's the heck is that about? Oh well, I'll look for that answer when I'm steaming in my next sauna. I love the format of the poem and the way you cut through the crap of our crazy egos. I would hope that the majority of the world is not living with this kind of demon haunting them. Makes me think and reassess do I know myself and do I let others see who I am. Thanks, Larry for sharing this excellent piece of work. Bobby

    • Larry Rankin profile image
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      Larry Rankin 22 months ago from Oklahoma

      Bobby: thanks so much for the thoughtful comments. I'm glad you enjoyed the poem.

    • the rawspirit profile image

      Robert Morgan 22 months ago from Hutchinson Island, FL - Myrtle Beach, SC - Scottsdale AZ

      Larry, I had to come back and leave this quote by Jim Morrison it seemed so apropos, again great poem! “That's what real love amounts to - letting a person be what he really is. Most people love you for who you pretend to be. To keep their love, you keep pretending - performing. You get to love your pretence. It's true, we're locked in an image, an act - and the sad thing is, people get so used to their image, they grow attached to their masks. They love their chains. They forget all about who they really are. And if you try to remind them, they hate you for it, they feel like you're trying to steal their most precious possession.”

      ― Jim Morrison

    • Larry Rankin profile image
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      Larry Rankin 22 months ago from Oklahoma

      Great quote! Very appropriate. I'm a big Morrison fan, but didn't have this quote in my repertoire.

      Thanks again for the thoughtful comment.

    • amazmerizing profile image

      amazmerizing 22 months ago from PACIFIC NORTHWEST, USA

      Veery deeep waters here deeries... watch yer step! Kudos on the fine imagery, philosophy, and even a few hard hitting truths! POIFECT!!!

    • Larry Rankin profile image
      Author

      Larry Rankin 22 months ago from Oklahoma

      Amazmerizing: thanks for the positive feedback.

    • sujaya venkatesh profile image

      sujaya venkatesh 22 months ago

      great philosophy indeed

    • Larry Rankin profile image
      Author

      Larry Rankin 22 months ago from Oklahoma

      Sujaya: thanks for the thoughtful comment.

    • jgshorebird profile image

      jgshorebird 20 months ago from Southeastern U.S.

      Pain.

    • brakel2 profile image

      Audrey Selig 19 months ago from Oklahoma City, Oklahoma

      Hi Larry - The Road to Nowhere is a popular name, and I enjoyed your story about it. This is my first visit to your hub, inspired by Liz. I will stop by to read some of the humor. Thanks for sharing this philosophy. Blessings, Audrey

    • Larry Rankin profile image
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      Larry Rankin 19 months ago from Oklahoma

      Audrey: thanks for dropping by. I hope you enjoy your time here. My problem is that my style is quite varied, and sometimes while some of my material is loved, other parts alienate viewers.

      Might I suggest "How the Grynch Stole Everything"?

    • annasmom profile image

      annasmom 19 months ago

      Yep...I can understand the thoughts the narrator of this poem expresses. I like the way he rationalizes faking it. Sometimes life does bring us down to this. Good write, thought provoking.

    • Larry Rankin profile image
      Author

      Larry Rankin 19 months ago from Oklahoma

      Anna: thanks for dropping by.

    • Besarien profile image

      Besarien 15 months ago

      Okay, straight up, I'm not going to pretend I'm smart enough to know what this poem is really about. It definitely speaks to me right now of the political scene and what passes for culture in America but that is where my own head is at currently. There is that sense we're all soap volleyball players trying to keep that bubble in the air- whether that bubble is the American dream or the dream of reality as we know it. Very thought provoking work this is, and probably something that will stick with me even in that cozy little fireside room where I keep all my fragile and pretty dreams dust-free in cases. Inspired answer to billybuc's challenge.

    • Au fait profile image

      C E Clark 15 months ago from North Texas

      Interesting expression of your viewpoint.

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