I feel like an underdeveloped,
socially awkward adolescent,
delegated to the sidelines,
measuring esteem against
athleticism of those who
made the grade – a failure.
I feel like in my ineptitude,
I have hosted a party, bent
on celebrating the prowess
of others – created the perfect
environ to appear the team
player – oozed congeniality.
I feel as if it’s free food
that attracts the guests,
and my malaise that repels,
esteem trampled beneath
the feet of hasty retreats,
and unappreciative takers.
I feel perpetually locked
in other-ness, an oddball
whose best efforts barely
penetrate the self-assured
wall of social acceptability,
self-branded an outcast.
There is safety in apart-ment living;
would corral the little ones, declare
responsibility, obligations as a mask
for this self-banishing compulsion.
Except that I am lying prone, exposed
brain spilling onto concrete, shadows
revealing the darkness of my condition
hopelessly locked in physical inertia.
I am an unwitting contributor to
scientific (and pseudo) probing,
audacious autopsies pronouncing
conclusive evidence of motives.
Too polite (and weakened) to deflect,
I submit, demonstrating complacency,
sacrificing autonomy, fail to assert
that it is I who is taking this life test.
And, by the way, am passing quite
adequately, which defies all rational
diagnosis and prognosis and serves
to reassure me of ultimate success.
I scan the agenda,
anxiety clouding interpretation,
false sense of security driving.Ready.
Have miscalculated expectations,
face adolescent attitudes –
impatience, hunger, angst –
too late to turn back,
Dive in, creativity flowing,
inner resources my well,
no time for hesitation,
this is life.
Reward none, if you can’t reward all,
critics say, education should be fair.
Encourage positive behaviour only,
acknowledge accomplishments period.
Treat all children the same, equally;
it is unfair to let only a few shine.
Resources are limited, make do.
Why aren’t you giving more of yourself?
The attacks are personal, guilt real.
Teachers need protection, not blame.
Rest; nap as often as you need,
life can be exhausting; store up.
Cry; let your feelings be known;
your voice is your saving grace.
Joy is a whole body experience,
immerse yourself in total delight.
Hold on to those who love you;
your survival depends on them.
See the world through new ideas;
you never know what thrills await.
Listen intently when others speak;
they will be your captive audience.
Imitate others; practice until you
have found your own expression.
Trust the process, living fully
in each moment; be present.
Honour the miracle of existence;
embrace the blessing that is you!