Thursday, March 2, 2017


I expect that there are a whole lot more of us than like to admit it who grow up feeling we don't fit in with those around us, who keep looking for that "someone" to ease the angst. If we're lucky, we finally come to terms with whoever and whatever we are, or to borrow a cliche, come to feel comfortable in our own skin. For me, part of that process involved that period where I was trying to express myself in poetry.

 Steve and I are still unpacking, with many boxes still to go after several years. The recent project has been to get pictures up on the walls, to put our families around us while we live so far apart. In the midst of locating pictures, and seeking places on the walls for them in the apparent total absence of wall studs in this house, I also came across a framed poem from years ago. In reading it after so many years, I discovered I still liked it, still found it represented an essential part of myself, my own growth. I also found the irony in how it came to be on my wall, framed.

My own penmanship sucks. I wanted something special to show off this poem. So when my friend Polly informed me she did calligraphy, I bought some parchment paper and hired her - yes, actual scarce real money - to put the poem to paper.

Her skills were wonderful. Not a waver nor a wiggle which didn't belong, not a smudge, not a line slanting up or down as they would have done had I done the project. Just one thing jarred me when she handed over the finished project. Down at the bottom, in the largest, boldest print on the entire page, she signed it with her full name as the scriptist, along with the date of her work, not mine. Now I don't begrudge her taking credit for her work. But in the largest print? And with my name, as author, totally absent from the piece?  I mean, who does that? I decided to autograph the piece, on the slant for emphasis, in the best pen I owned at the time. After all, it was mine. Looking at it as I reframed it before hanging it in its new home, I noted that my ink hasn't stood the test of time. It can barely be seen. When it bothers me enough, I'll grab a Sharpee and do my best to redo the autograph following the same lines.

Polly and I didn't remain friends long after that. I'm not so sure it was due to the way the project was done. I really think it had more to do with the fact that she was sleeping with my boyfriend for weeks before either of them decided to let me have a clue about what was going on. And maybe it was a little bit to do with her "borrowing" my best belly dancing costume for some event and never, never returning it. But it all kind of reinforces my thoughts from way back when I wrote it.

                            by Heather M. Rosa

I go now,
A sojourner.
Turned away again and again
By those clusters of you
Huddled 'round your campfires
Who sensed within me
 A "not-one-of-us"
When I did not comprehend
And thought that "one-of-you"
Was who I should be,
I am awakened at last
And sense your truth.
I am not "one-of-you".
Just one.
Just me.
I celebrate.
The pain of all those times
I put behind me.
It is no longer who I am.
The reaization floods me with relief
And gives me freedom to explore,
To turn my back to what I knew before
But realize now I never knew.
I go now to seek out
My own truths.
I go now,

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