The Beauty of Perspective

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The Beauty of Perspective

Most of the time when we see an apple core, we see the unsavory, chewed up bits left over after enjoying the delicious fruit. It’s unwanted and a little distasteful, and so we throw it away. If we see one lying on the sidewalk, we think, “Why can’t people just throw away their trash? That’s disgusting!” We’re not seeing what’s really there.

This is that same apple core from a different perspective. It’s beautiful! A gorgeous little star simply teeming with life!

People are kind of like that, aren’t they?

My Bird Hates Me

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My Bird Hates Me

This is Mahina. She's mean.

This is Mahina. She’s mean.

My bird hates me
I feed her, water her
give her treats and clean her poop
I do all of the things
she needs to be a happy little bird
but she hates me
She prefers my husband
I’m sure there’s some kind of
deep metaphor
in that
One day, I’ll write poetry
about it
It will be passed around for
the intellectual genius it
purveys

Feminists will discuss the
patriarchy
of the bird
and how as long as she
is caged within
the confines of masculine thought
she will buy in
subverting her own sex
Set the bird free so
she can fly away
and poop on our heads
equally

Teenagers, oh teenagers!
Those denizens of
nobody understands
They will pass it
around on smartphones
because the bird
the bird
is my mother
She is never satisfied
I can never please her
she prefers
my brother

Intellectual hipsters
will fill their
sustainable coffee cups
with likewise caffeine
and discuss
the bird
brandishing words like
meta
conceit
and petrarchan
Will I be compared
to Bradstreet or Marvel?
Oh, let it be Marvel!
I can be coy,
so very coy

But for now
I am tired
No deep, affected poetry
tonight
Instead, a cover
draped from a distance that keeps
fingers safe
from what lurks inside
a mundane cage
Sleep well,
you mean little jerk

Handicapped Parking and the Random Internet Whiner

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To the Internet Girl who Complained about Handicapped Parking,

Handicapped Parking Hey, girl! Yeah, I read your little rant that you penned so bravely from behind the comfort of your computer screen. I gave it its due consideration as I scrolled past, ignored your silly little remarks and went on to something else in my day. But then, I saw your efforts show up again on an EDS page. Oh, that’s Ehlers Danlos Syndrome since I’m sure you have no idea what that is, but I won’t even complain about that. Most people don’t know about it. Look it up. Anyway, I read through some of the remarks from my fellow EDS’ers (I do care about that) and I saw how much hurt you, and others of your ilk, are spreading with your ignorant comments about how unfair it is for handicapped people to park closer to the front door than you. How that if people are able to walk through a store, they should be able to walk through the parking lot.

I suppose you never considered how dangerous it is for a person with limited mobility to navigate a parking lot with its cars dashing to and fro, or how the added steps could prove the entire trip to get a gallon of milk to be just too much, or how dangerous an icy or wet parking lot could be for someone not quite as physically stable as the rest, or even how a person can stop and rest safely in a building when they are tired or hurt but in a parking lot – not so much. It doesn’t seem like you gave the whole situation any consideration other than the fact that they get to park up close and you don’t. So very unfair!

I tell you what, in an effort to be fair, I promise to give fair consideration to how unfair life is to you and your non-ability to park where I park. The next time I wake up in the morning and have to pop my own shoulder back into place, I will think about how unfair life is to the non-upfront parkers. When I strap my two, rather obvious and sturdy-looking, bi-lateral (that means two, sweet-pea) knee braces on so I can actually walk and go out in public to the stares of grown adults, I’ll think about how unfair it is that you have to walk those extra steps through the lot. And, definitely, when I spend another sleepless night trying to dull the pain enough with medication just to get a couple of hours of almost rest, I will remember to shed one of my flowing tears for the absolute horror of able-bodied people giving up 2% of the parking lot to the disabled.

So go ahead! Rage against the machine and rail against the disabled! Stamp your little foot about how unfair life is, you special little snowflake. And since I’m sure you have never been told no in your whole life, I will be sure to positively redirect you to the back of the parking lot as I hang my blue tag and park where you really wanna park. The life that gave me that “special” privilege is, after all, just so dang fair!

_____________________________________

To those with Invisible Disabilities and Those Whose Disability is out for Everyone to See,

I know you don’t abuse your parking. I know those of us who have good days and can walk, will park in a regular space that day because we know what it’s like to need that up front spot. I know that you park there when you need it, even if people can’t see that. I know that those of you who have to park there all the time would love to have a good day and park in any regular spot. I know. But, you need to know something: you owe NO ONE an explanation. Not for where you park, not for where you sit, not for how you live your life. Life isn’t fair. We’ve figured that out a long time ago, haven’t we? Just stay strong and keep going!

______________________________________

To those who Use Other People’s Parking Tags that You Don’t Need,

You suck. You are a major part of the problem. You are why we have to deal with the ignorant jerks who confront us in parking lots. You’re actually worse than the ranting internet girl. She is just impotently whining about how she wants to take parking spaces away from the people who actually need them. You actually do it. STOP IT.

 

Without Today

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My friends inspire me in so many ways, not the least of which is to write poetry. It’s my way of sharing in their laughter, silly thoughts, moments of sadness, or just to say that I’m here and I get it. This one happened today. To the one this is for, I’m here for you. To anyone else this means something to, I get it and you are not in it alone.

Without Today

Boiled Cider Syrup

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Boiled Cider SyrupLots of yummy fall recipes call for boiled cider. It’s a syrup made from boiling down cider and it imparts an intense taste of apple to recipes. It’s kind of expensive at $11 a bottle, but you can make it for a lot less. I made this pint by bringing a gallon of fresh cider to boil in my dutch oven. Then I lowered the temp to a medium low and cooked it uncovered for several hours, until it reduced down to a molasses type syrup. This will last all year in the fridge. I can’t wait to try it next week in some yummy cider caramels!

Why Forgive?

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Why Forgive?Have you ever sat through a murder trial? It’s absolutely brutal. The victim’s family has to listen to every horrific detail of how their loved one died, without saying a word or making a sound. They must relive the crime in vivid detail as their understanding is broadened in ways they never needed to know. The how, the why, the who is gone over bit by bit as the prosecution works to prove the accused guilty. Then, they must suffer through the explanations, excuses and even justifications of the defense. The guilty knows he is guilty, but out of self-preservation, he still persists in his innocence. It is maddening.

That is where you place yourself when you linger on in a state of unforgiveness – right smack dab in the middle of a trial. Not letting go of the past is just as much of an active decision as letting it go. You must continuously go over the details, justifying your anger. And it is justified. What that person did to you was wrong and it never should have been done. You are probably changed forever and your normal will never be what it was before the heinous act. But who is that trial hurting?

The trial for the guilty is over. You have already adjudicated him or her as guilty and you cannot do it twice, whether the guilt is ever admitted to or not. He may sit inside his prison forever, or she may have done her time and be released, but no matter how many times you hold trial, that person can never be convicted again. You, however, must relive it over and over again as long as you insist on holding trial in your empty courtroom. The guilty inflicted the pain the first time, but you are the one inflicting your own pain now.

I think most people insist on putting themselves through this torture (myself included) because forgiveness is too often equated with excusing or approving of the crime. It is not. Or perhaps you think that forgiving a person means that you need to start a relationship with them once again. You do not. If you want to start that relationship again, of course you can, but it is certainly not a necessary act of forgiveness. Forgiveness simply means that the trial is over. You will no longer go over the minutia of what that person did wrong. They are guilty, they have been held accountable and now you will move your life forward and let go of the past.