There was a time, in the growing up
Of boys, immature, that naked
Was a funny word, a funny thought,
Before the days it began to imply
Things it oughtn't, for we all owned it,
In a sense, and we would sit around,
Boys, in the calm of late night
And early morning and joke about
Every man naked under his clothes.
We said it because of it's truth;
Clothers were but a cover-up
For our innate nakedness,
The plight of mankind, eternally naked
And needing to cover it, and the elders
Somehow heard of our jesting
And thought it course and, of all things,
Immature (for we were, and how
They thought otherwise will forver be
Unknown). What followed were reprimands
And talkings-to and other nonsense.
After all, what's so wrong
With an observation of the obvious?
I wonder now if there weren't
Denial in their accusations,
But we knew, under all their fine
Garments and window dressings,
Their were naked men, as afraid
Of exposure as anyone.
It strikes me as odd that
Even out leaders refuse that
Which is common to us all.
That is not to suggest
That I think we should all be naked
All the time, rather, that it ought
In some manner, to be discussed,
Because hiding it won't remove it,
Ignoring it won't destroy it,
And there are some who falter
At the realization of their nakedness,
Of their humanity, and think
That they are utterly alone in it,
As if we all were somehow a part
Of our clothers and owned
No true flesh, no nakedness,
And they fear to be exposed
For the abnormals they suppose they are.
It's not that we ought
To dump our garbage
On a Sunday morning alter,
Or stand at the pulpit
Before the congregation unadorned,
But these facts of flesh,
Of mortality that we all share
Ought to be shared to overcome it,
Fight it, to realize we really are the same.
A wise man once said:
"There's something about being naked
With a group of guys
That opens you up to a new level
Of relationship with them."
It's the comfort we take in what
We all share, but there are always
Elders and those who condemn
What they themselves have
But refuse to speak of,
And there's nothing to do
But pretend back which is why
We'll all continue simply
To be naked under our clothes,
Until one finds the courage
To step, naked, out of line,
And deal with it.