Bystander | Teen Ink

Bystander MAG

January 14, 2010
By Pastinaface SILVER, Short Hills, New Jersey
Pastinaface SILVER, Short Hills, New Jersey
6 articles 2 photos 7 comments

Favorite Quote:
"Be yourself, and you will find, those who mind don't matter and those who matter don't mind."

I didn't know,
I didn't know,
I didn't know,
I am a bystander.

You guys all said
Boy, she is so strange
She walks like she
really needs a cane

Remember when
she brought a leotard last year
to practice?
Yeah, I remember that, you all said

Annoying, you called this girl
Stupid, you called this girl
You mimicked her dances, her looks, even her smile
And then I asked, after a while:

What? Who? Who is this girl?
She's over there
Let's go take a whirl
Come on Come on
It'll just be a second

Okay, I'll go say hi,
I thought as they beckoned.

Robot Girl was close, close enough to hear everything we said
when we approached her, she turned so white, she looked
nearly dead
and then a thought began to echo in my head
What am I doing?

My friends all laughed, they wouldn't let her pass
No teachers said anything, they knew it wouldn't last
the girl was just a girl, she wasn't in their class
and she was talking with her friends; they assumed, they didn't ask

The girl's eyelids were purple, dusty and lined.
as she burned her tormenter's faces into the darker parts of
her mind
And a gasp escaped my throat, I wanted to show a sign
That I was not one of them, I do not associate with their kind

And so a struggle came – and what was I to do?
I had been where that girl was before, I had lived it long
and through
so I was frozen between a line, not one way or the other
What had the girl done to my friends that made them hate another?
And when I was frozen, I could see her tears
running to her mom hoping we'd all just disappear
fear of coming to school tomorrow or maybe ever again
And as the bullies cheered, the people who were once my friends,
that's when I decided this was going to end.

I was a bystander. Not anymore.

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This article has 9 comments.

on Feb. 9 2017 at 8:58 pm
C.E.Roth BRONZE, Waxhaw, North Carolina
3 articles 0 photos 15 comments

Favorite Quote:
To love another person is to see the face of God." -Victor Hugo

This is stunning and beautiful. It tells a story with amazing rhyme patterns and flowing poetry. I love it! It's also a piece with a good message

mplo said...
on Nov. 11 2015 at 7:10 am
Good point well taken, angel_bunny! People don't come to the defense of people who are being bullied often enough. Moreover, it often continues into adulthood, in the community and/or the workplace, which is even sadder.

mplo said...
on Nov. 11 2015 at 7:08 am
You're absolutely right, violin! One finds out who their friends really are in such situations.

violin BRONZE said...
on Aug. 23 2014 at 1:21 pm
violin BRONZE, Sugar Land, Texas
2 articles 0 photos 4 comments
Awesome! When I was bullied, no one cared. Everyone who was my friend was just a bystander. If your friend doesn't help you when your bullied, then they're not your real friend. I hate bystanders.

on Sep. 9 2013 at 3:42 pm
asdfghjklfancat SILVER, Forsyth, Georgia
6 articles 0 photos 3 comments

Favorite Quote:
"Nothing is impossible, the word itself says 'I'm possible'!" -Audrey Hepburn

This is a beautiful peice of poetry. People really need to stand up to bullies and try to make things right.

rheame said...
on Aug. 21 2013 at 6:32 am
rheame, Anand, Other
0 articles 0 photos 64 comments

Favorite Quote:
turn a mess into a lesson

a test into testimony

a trial into triumph
and a victim into champion

quite true.

on Feb. 9 2013 at 2:01 am
Roe-Daniels BRONZE, >>>>>>>, Other
2 articles 0 photos 49 comments
Nice job!!!! :)

on Feb. 4 2011 at 6:47 pm
VandalSpirit DIAMOND, Pleasant Prairie, Wisconsin
51 articles 9 photos 185 comments

Favorite Quote:
Yet this I call to mind and therefore I have hope: Because of Gods great love, we are not consumed. His compassion never fail. They are new every morning; great is your faithfulness.

this is really good, it sounds a lot like what ive been thru if you're looking from the point of view of either main people, and it would be nice if you could check out some of my latest work if possible

on Jan. 27 2010 at 5:23 pm
this is amazing. i love the description of what she sees when she is frozen at the end.