They placed her in the dark, locked the door and hid the key.
They took away her voice, so she was mute and surrounded by silence.
They took away her friends, so she wandered the earth alone.
They took away her art, so she dwelled in a world without color.
They took away her hope, so she was shrounded in despair.
They took away her freedom, so she wore the chains of a slave.
They took away her dreams, so she embraced the nightmares.

Then years later...
They opened the door, letting the sunlight pour in.
They smiled and summoned her to promises of long ago.
To old friends returned, to dreams come true, and better days to come.

But...
They wondered why she didn't laugh, wouldn't sing.
They wondered why she didn't embrace her friends.
They wondered why she didn't want to paint or dance.
They wondered why she didn't smile or be happy.
They wondered why she didn't care about freedom.
They wondered why she didn't want to dream.

They didn't realize she had become what they had made her.
They didn't realize what they did could not be undone.
She had not given up.
She had learned she could live without those things;
She had learned she wanted to live without those things.

And so she did.

Posted/Updated on November 29th, 2018

I tried to work in the fact that "friends" in this context does not mean real friends, but rather, fair-weather friends, who leave at the first sign of trouble (especially if someone makes it worth their while), and return when the going is good. Anyhow, it just didn't fit into the context of the poem, but I hope the meaning is clear anyway...

Edit to Add: Just a little clarity on this one. This is not necessary about something specific, but how people can learn to live through adversity. As someone once said, "it's amazing what we can survive." So many people fighting so many battles, fighting through oppression, yet they manage to go on, to live without. I find so much inspiration in that -- makes me feel bad for complaining about my woes. <3