A Plea for Awareness

There is anger in dis-ease,
an impotent railing against
the injustice of biological
systems bent on breaking

souls; this relentless drag,
this mournful existence,
it is not pity that we seek,
nor charity that appeases

but answers, pragmatic
protocols, procedures to
dissuade the onslaught
of symptoms, unburden

our suffering – none of us
weak, yet disheartened by
medical abandonment,
many confined in isolation

our embers, seething
beneath bedclothes,
burning behind eyes
that have lost focus

forgive us if we rant,
if our conduct reeks of
self-righteousness, but we
are missing, millions missing

plagued by a condition
long ignored, misconstrued,
dismissed, we are angry
unapologetically maddened

have been blighted by
an illness without definable
diagnosis, pronounced only
by elimination, overlooked

by insurance providers,
disability claims, as if we
have construed an alibi
for opting out of society

if we lash out, speak out
express our discomfort
in uncomely ways, well
then listen, reasoning

guides our hands, our
voices, our rampages –
we are disappointed,
frustrated, unheeded

and very much alive
and individually, and
collectively we wield
our ire as a cry for help.

See us, feel us, find
the resources to seek
for a cure, reinstate
the lives of the missing.





Is There An Exit Strategy?

Following political tides –
mesmerized by neglect
of actual issues – playing
to an audience of moaners
(standard consumerist
plights) – glossing over
exploitation of women,
verbal slaughter of race,
religion and social values.

Wondering about media –
who commandeer bias,
swallowing atrocities and
spewing contrived truths,
absent sound voice, or will,
jeopardizing the security
of so many trampled in
the race for what? Surely
not responsibility – what

lapse of conscience has
allowed hateful rhetoric
to bloody progress, no
consequences?  Who will
bear the burden when in
the absence of morality
or respect for humanity,
the margins will increase?

The world quakes at the
failure to acknowledge
this broken path, see only
a devaluation of assets,
perceive a race that did
no more than increase
the monarchy of a king,
grant power to absolve
sins – a sleight-of-hand
trick – nothing to do with
the common habitants –
have so many questions
about how they’ll proceed.

Turn Off That Screen!

It’s a crapshoot –
ostentatious celebrities
polluting developing minds
masking panic;

collective agreements
re-violating, prodding
drive elaborate schemes
to improve our living status
personas discomforting
to future generations;

what entertainment –
bait and switch tactics
proclaiming worthy causes
grand venues depicting happy
disguising uncertainty
loss of societal innocence

(Image: media-values.blogspot.com)


It’s Not That I Don’t See…

Somewhere, searchers are combing through rubble
to find signs of life, or remains, while I fret over the
size of my belly, bloated by excess, filled by gluttony.

Somewhere, a mother pleas for the return of her child,
a daughter stolen, held by soldiers, while another cries
because her toddler’s coiffed appearance fails to win.

Somewhere, their village destroyed by war, families
flee to find peace, encounter rejection, and worse,
while a son murders his sister to honour family pride.

Somewhere, parents wait with terror-seized hearts
as a gun-wielding lunatic holds their children hostage,
while businessman fatten their wallets over arms sales.

Perspective tells me that I am unjustified to complain
over my first world problems, am selfish to bemoan
the trivialities of my self-centered existence, that I just

need to shift my viewpoint, look outside myself, and see
that inequalities and hardships beg for my compassion,
alter my focus and become a beacon for the world; and,

yet, I am overwhelmed by the tragedy that floods my
large screen tv, desensitized by the staged and unstaged
images of brutality, tired of the unsubstantiated claims

of terrorism, and the political garnering for votes; cannot
bear to hear of one more gun attack in a country where
the right to bear arms is confused with personal security;

feel out of control when I listen to stories of great loss,
am compelled to shut off the media, turn my attention to
self-criticism, and find a manageable issue close to home.

(Image: dict.space.4goo.net)

Let Me Out Of Here!

Weighed down by complications –
you see, the amount of baggage
I carry surpasses my storage
capacity; and despite attempts
to simplify, paranoia tends to
my bathroom routines, and
no amount of persuasion can
appease her suspicions; and
the majority of my contents
have been accumulated by
my father’s business, and not
really mine to unload, although
I try, his tyranny still haunts me;
and well, anything new that I
start has to be protected from
the familial bouts of insanity;
and that is why I just want to
pack my bags and get out of
here, and be a mother to my
children; but it’s complicated.

Casting Call

Anticipation that life will one day recommence –
as if a curtain will open and there I’ll be, sitting
in the audience, hungrily waiting for the play –
has drawn me from my solitude, encouraged.

Have a friendly enough disposition, once graced
the boards myself – a lifetime ago now – confident
in my ability to engage, find kindred conversation,
may even make a friend or two, unless I disappear

again, slip back into the silence, abandon others
without a trace, grow restless, search for meaning
among the sheepish drones –a preponderance of
perpetual inactivity begetting obesity, choosing

comfort over confrontation – the curtain is drawn
the drama unfolding and we idol sitters, we fickle
non-committers watch agape, dumbfounded by
the acts, defy our better instincts, remain inert,

prefer to go back to sleep, but the dogged truths
of inhumanity are playing out on life’s stage, and
we are called to brush off the lull of anxious
politeness and dare to rise to anger, find passion

claim a role and be cast into the action, no time
for auditions, the script is unfolding, the ending
assured, unless we are willing to awaken, prod
the masses, and re-envision a less tragic ending.

(Image from camstage.com)


 No longer tolerating
highly processed,
artificially sweetened
offerings; am sickened
by the whiteness of
bleached presentations;
bloat at the suggest of
southern fried coatings,
am pained by inorganic
solutions, or beefed up
regimens; cannot digest
milking; find the endless
pursuit of bread gut-
wrenching; have no palate
for genetically modified
ideas; find fatty concepts
unappetizing; am loathe
to consume further fishy
tales; avoid intoxication
by heady bouquets; have
no stomach for saucy
accompaniments; am
intolerant of gluttony;
craving a sustainable
form of nourishment.


Ask me how I’m doing
and I’ll say “fine”, not
because I’m actually “fine”
but because “fine” is the only
socially acceptable response.

If I said that I have been lying
here for three hours now trying
to will my body to movement
that would elicit unsolicited
advice and tarnish my “fine”

I’d berate myself for breaking
my promise not to complain
knowing that complaining
provokes compulsive needs
to fix which makes me angry

Because my concept of trying –
which is defined by getting dressed
every day – does not match trying
every new therapy, drug, exercise
offered by well-meaning but clueless

others, who may experience fatigue
at times, but have no understanding
of what it is to be exhausted after
something as simple as bathing,
let alone debating what I haven’t tried.

So, ask me how I’m feeling, and
I’ll say “fine” and we can get on
about the weather or the latest
movie must-see, and I can bask
in the warmth of the contact

carry the conversation into the
void of the rest of my day, smile
to think that I still have friends
who accept my “fine” even though
they know I am anything but.



Woulda, Shoulda, Coulda

I’d go back to school, continue post graduate work, rally the troops to get me there, scrounge
the fees, find someone to carry the books (I no longer have the strength) – undoubtedly miss a few sessions, get behind, feel frustration building, consult with the energetic youthful instructor, become brain locked when I cannot interpret the email address she writes down for me, confront the fact that transcribing the required reading assignment in nearly impossible (which means the work will likely never get completed in the allotted time period), and drop out.

I’d look after your young children, give you a break, but my hand is not steady and if I drop a cup it will break and what if it shatters where the children are playing – barefooted because I couldn’t rally the wherewithal to get them dressed without that much needed tea – and now the shards are a real threat, and the children are laughing and bouncing around, not heeding my warnings, thinking it’s all a joke, and I have lost control, needing to clean it up and manage the children, which I cannot do because multi-tasking is no longer within my realm of possibilities.

I’d visit my sister, the schizophrenic, who lives in a group home, and try to be supportive, but my mind is still reeling over the children, and other accumulating failures, and I know I’ve let everyone down, and quite frankly, her current state of neurosis seems so much less troublesome than mine, and I have nothing to say that would aide her other than I know what it feels like to be fucked up and exist outside the ‘norm’, and right now I just want to crawl back into my cell of isolation and breathe again – so have a good life.

I’d get a scooter, try to go for a ride on my own – be independent – but I’d likely choose the back roads to avoid the traffic and, not having accounted for inclement weather, would find the pace too fast and be forced into some small town where (with my luck) they’d be having their Christmas parade and I would be caught between crowds lining the street and marching bands and in a moment of panic would duck into the nearest opening – a family restaurant from which people are constantly coming and going  and where I’d realize that I just need to get home – and try to exit  just as someone (equally as pressed) is trying to enter, and having lost all vestiges of my normally polite self, I would refuse to back up, choosing instead to rage at the poor unsuspecting woman, who only needed a quick place to pee.

So, when you next ask me what I do with myself all day – and aren’t I bored – be assured that I am not lacking in suitable stimulation, do not need to take on added responsibility to give myself a sense of purpose, am incapable of volunteering with any degree of compassion, and have accepted my current state of dependency as the most appropriate given coping capabilities. I am, at present, unable to navigate life with any degree of normalcy, am content to struggle with my own limitations, putter at a speed below tortoise, bear the silence of solitude, and stay home.  I am not broken, in need of rescue, or lost.  I simply am.

Rehabilitation Scheme

Disability wants me back to work
(rehabilitation they have promised)
and since I’ve given up my car –
driving is difficult when cognitively
impaired – I’ve decided to take a bus.

It’s a school bus, which is fitting,
although much harder to drive
than I had originally anticipated,
and since I’ve been assigned to
a new school, parking is a problem.

This is an inner city school, so no
parking on site, and if they expect
me to park at the back of some lot
across the street, they are sorely
misinformed about my capability.

I cannot walk that distance, and
come to think of it, I will not be
able to maneuver through the
hallways of this three-story ark –
we are not off to a good start.

I pull in front of the school – begin
my return by breaking rules – and
head for the office to explain my
misguided efforts and question
the sensibility of this whole idea

when I suddenly realize that even
before I’ve entered the classroom
I’ve just abandoned a whole load
of students, who are undoubtedly
wondering where their bus got to.

This rehabilitation scheme has
proven to be a bigger fiasco than
any extravagances I have allowed
myself – and paid for – since falling
ill – thank god I’m only dreaming.

To my insurance company, I say:
thank you for being there, and the
support administered monthly, and
please be patient – I will voluntarily
return to life when feasibly plausible.