This picture is one of the few times I've seen Will not smiling, but that T-shirt and the hair explains a lot about his life's philosophy.
That Kid by William Prater
I am that kid, bloody and bruised,
thrown on the sidewalk, wasted and used.
I am that kid in different clothes,
beat up and spit on for words that he chose.
I am that kid, no belief left in God,
that Christians reviled, and Samiritans robbed.
I am that kid that stayed late at school,
to avoid the cheers and the sneers of the "cool".
I am that kid that covered the mirrors,
that quietly hurt myself, screaming through tears.
I am that kid, coming out to my folks,
only to find I am the butt of their jokes.
I am that kid, hit and thrown to the ground,
you said you'd protect, but you were never around.
I am that kid who couldn't take any more,
so I closed off my heart, and prayed to my core.
I am that kid, that pray and pray,
since suicide's sin, kill me another way.
I am that kid, who lived through that shit,
now I AM STRONGER, and on the other side of it.
I am that man, who sees the truth,
that people are mean, and worse, in their youth.
I am that man who understands how
the same ones who made fun are all sorry now.
I am that man, they all wanted to be,
even in youth, cause the truth set me free.
I am that man, who chooses to love,
stronger than hate, I rise above.
I am that man though the kid is still me,
the only difference is now, I'm happy to be.
I am that man who journeyed though hate
bruised but not broken, who chose his own fate.
I am that man who will love who he please
No apologies, no regrets, 'til this life, it does cease.
If this poem brought you to tears, as it did me, please visit Will's site and let him know at Just Write and SO Gay.