Call It Wisdom

Get back to work! Bravado punches,
but my pick up is shelved – would love
to wheel out of here and take flight –
and interview skills are ungrounded,
fear I will let fly unfiltered gibberish.

Go for it! Boisterousness cajoles –
but boldness is dangerous, and pushy
only puts up walls; shifting gears might
be an option, but the road ahead’s a steep
decline, and I have to carefully find footing.

You have to try! Good-heartedness offers,
but the path and I are both handicapped,
movement needs support, and my focus
is failing – am more tortoise than hare –
regressing into this pedestrian existence.

You can’t just give up! Impatience scowls,
but not only is the party of energetics with
its social antics out of my reach – nuances
included – but to be honest, I am no longer
interested in being a part. Call it wisdom.



Sorrow’s Vigil

There is sorrow in the nighttime,
when the light of day has faded,
and the noise of life subsided,
and all the world is slumbering.

Then my heart beats with a single
lone drum, a heaviness weighing
on me, chest punctured with grief,
distractions losing their hold.

There is sorrow in the nighttime,
a deep-seated darkness, void of
hope, the deafening echo of unshed
tears, the brutality of solitude.

When all have surrendered to dreams,
my soul – tired of the daily effort to be
courageous, to smile when I want to
rage, to protect my beloveds – weeps.

There is sorrow in the nighttime,
the grief of knowing that this defective
existence is too much for others to
bear, whose hearts have glazed over,

who will me to wellness, shake
their heads, and spew frustration,
as if I am somehow an accomplice
in this state of vile stagnation,

There is sorrow in the nighttime,
when questions rob me of sleep,
and the passage of time fails to
ease the injustice of so much loss.

And while acceptance is the best
progress, and I know that faith
will sustain me, they are fickle
companions when the sun sets.

There is sorrow in the nighttime
a restless amalgamation of so
much emotional angst, with no
shelter for relief…


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.

Reform Called For

Placed without consultation
in an undesirable position –
certainly didn’t ask for this –
I am decidedly displeased.

Princess tendencies expected
pampered outcomes – exalted
deployment – hypochondriacal
drama despises responsibility.

Lack of working boundaries
merits complaints, too many
unknowns counterproductive,
yet I will forge ahead, accept.

Cross-purposes: reckless regard
for what’s important, and a need
to make things right (regardless
of cost) drive me to distraction.

Craving simplicity, am motivated
to create a suitable environment,
encounter more obstacles, feel
sabotaged from all angles, despair

lash out – not maliciously – only
begging for accountability, willing
understanding of consequences –
without collaboration futility arises.

Clear guidelines are needed here,
unrealistic expectations not helping,
need predictability, healthy protocols,
reinforcements to calm the chaos.

Foundational barriers breaking down,
the royal tower is crumbling – radical
change in the offing – reset, commit,
we can do this with duel dual effort!


Oh, To Dream

I dream of waking before the dawn,
preparing for my day with proficiency,
professionally preened and on the go.

In reality, I see the early light of day
through an insomnia-induced haze,
or miss it altogether, unable to rise.

I will carelessly tie my hair back,
and moan at my image, forgoing cosmetics –
no one will see me, after all.

If I dress, it will be for comfort,
elasticized waistline compensating for swelling,
soft fabrics to soothe the burning aches.

In my dream it is the first day of school,
and I am excited and anxious,
caught up in the camaraderie of the moment.

I awake to the resounding silence of solitude,
no schedules await me, no colleagues
exchanging pleasantries, communal conspiracy absent.

I will pace myself, shuffling
between bed and simple tasks,
a cup of tea, maybe some writing.

I drive in my dream, a shiny red car
in which I glide through the streets
and park with the pride of knowing it awaits.

Its been years since I’ve felt the freedom
and independence of self-chauffeuring,
reliant on the more able-bodied, sharply cognizant.

It’s a rare occasion that rouses me from
this compelled complacency, enough
to venture into the hyper-stimulating world.

Disability has closed around me,
limiting experience, restricting imagination,
until I dream – and am whole again.

My Spirit Stands Strong

Progress – seldom linear –
tosses me into unexpected decline –
stranded and incapacitated.

My son – with labour-hardened strength
leaps to my side, steadying me
and I feel the fear in his caring grip.

My daughter, ever compassionate,
reaches out for me with horror-filled eyes
as my body crumples onto the bed.

My husband, my oak, seeks to comfort
his voice betraying the helplessness
this futile predicament imposes.

Beloveds, I know that you see me
this dis-abled, non-functioning shell
weakened and sickly, lying on this bed.

Do not be deceived – that is not me –
it is only an illusion –
a vessel – temporarily fettered.

I am, in essence, beside you –
ambitions and desires intact.
Feel me there, tall and proud.

Sense the wholeness of my being
remember me for the woman I am yet to be –
My spirit stands strong.

Accepting Self

Desiring reconnection with life,
a longing for purposeful normalcy,
I push forward, intentionally ignoring
advice to the contrary.

Original intention well-meaning
(but not thought through)
minimal exertion is what’s called for,
but I feel inspired to do more.

Former strength now lost,
new awareness on the periphery,
hindered only by this cloudy head-
executive functioning currently disabled.

Bottom line is I must come clean,
stop overstating my capacity,
accept the unpredictable,
and recognize my limitations.

Embrace the lesson of constraints
and stop sabotaging the journey.
I am what I am, not a former definition
based on a life now redundant.

Naked, I fear that someone will see me –
I fear that they will not see me –
desire for acknowledgment,
a very human condition.

I need to ignore the obstacles,
wholeheartedly, without compromise,
reveal myself – no longer hidden.
I am, after all, what I am.