They Call It Pain

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Hey guys! This 3-part poem was commissioned by TELUS and WE Day for their campaign to help people #endbullying. They have a contest over on the @telus profile where in the comments of the contest page, you can write a poem to win. Head over there for more info, this poem is a guide for you guys!

I'm honoured to be working with TELUS again and to share this poem with you all. Together we can rise above anything, and bullying is one of those things that is everywhere all the time, but can be defeated when we come together. You're never alone, always seek help, and help others when they can't help themselves.


They Call It Pain by Tahlie Purvis

they call it pain

I hated school

the walls

the lockers

the smell

coach barton's yelling

the classes

the noises

the shoving

drew mort's laugh

the bells

the sneers

the kicking

a feeling would

grow inside me

as I picked up my things

strewn along the floor

like the last embers

keeping me


it would burn

then sting

then fade

until it was


I knew the feeling


that feeling

they call it


it hurt

but no one


no one said


they were silent to my


watching as drew came

from the left

a slur

from the right

eyes glanced away creating a


I couldn't break it down

we built each other's walls up

to keep each other


the feeling came back

they call it pain

I call it reality.

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