AGAINST ALL ODDS

Feel like you don't fit in? Feel disintegrated around people and become what they want you to be? And does it create an intensity inside you all of the time? Take a chance. Kick out those half-versions. Be yourself. You might be in a smaller group, or even alone, but my guess is you'll be happier.

An optimist might think there is one less step in the stairway, a pessimist, one more. It doesn't fall to me to try to change anybody's predilection. I'm just reminding you that either way, you could tumble, so hang onto the rail.

I used to believe that the little difficulties of youth coupled with the unconventional teaching methods of my father was what made me strong, but my father insisted, "You were born strong. Life and I just made you prove it."

Don't we all look out into the world and decide each day how much to participate? Sometimes we move reluctantly because we have some manner of unrest. Sometimes we question the fairness of something and that slows us. Other times there is no real substance, no obvious obstacle, but we are still stalled. There are times we just don't have the heart or the strength for the conquest. Sometimes we don't really value the prize. We live and travel through it all, sometimes at the height of our ability, sometimes not, and increase in spirit in proportion to our acceptance of opportunity, and if we are really lucky, I mean REALLY lucky, we love greatly, and are loved.

As a teacher, life is a hard grader, very often giving the test first, and the lesson later.

We all make mistakes that no manner of explaining can ever make right. Reason gets rusty and usually leaks, so in the end, all we can really do is climb the precarious moment, leap off the edge and freefall toward acceptance.

Whenever you think individuals or the world is coming down too hard on you, remember that strength can seldom be determined (and subsequently increased) without the application of pressure.

Everybody knows someone who can clear the room with eyes alone. I don't like to believe that a great number of them set out to hurt anybody, but for some reason they can't seem to get that option entirely off the list.

Most people don't really grow up. They simply masquerade mature behavior in public.

The eyes in the mirror are the worst of them all for criticism.

Only if you love what you do will you give it your very best!

My own body is my personal trainer. It tells me what to eat and when to eat, when to go to bed, and when, if ever, to exercise. And I listen. So far, it's worked out.

Too often we are at odds with ourselves. We shake, push, pull, create all manner of resistance to our own advancement until we are compromised by imposed limitations and infected by the acceptance of defeat.

SNIPPET OF AFFECTION

(Written 5/1/19 -Kate)

They were young and didn't know squat about each other beyond initial attraction, but there was a definite moment when it all came apart..... the scrape of tires on a gravel road, the groan of uncooperative gears, and the old car aslant against a burst of bushes and bramble, just missing an old Crone of an oak. The worst of it was a flat tire. He swore and grunted against the rusted lugs until he was musked by the heat and the effort. He threw the tire iron and she watched it spin into the yellow grass. His shirt was sculpted to his body, a nice body it was, and dark where he sweat, a body she had admired for months, thinking, though she was only sixteen, he was surely "the one," and he went on cursing. Unconcerned with rescue plans because they were only a mile from town, an easy walking distance, she sat down at the edge of the road, playfully drew a map in the gravel and grit, and she bit her lip. She squinted at clouds, at a graffiti of birds, and bit her lip harder, but she couldn't hold audible reaction back anymore, and finally she laughed, knowing she was letting go of a dream-- not a polite little giggle, but something that could have broke from a bullhorn. He threw her a hateful look and cussed more. All the more she laughed while his hand made a fist that, but for distance, was meant for her....and then she got up, free of yet another adolescent expectation, but still amused, and began walking.

 

LONG DISTANCE THUMBER

(Written 11/22/17 --Kate)

Veronica Boston emerged from a scorched pocket of autumn, near Highway 77.

Progress on the rocky shoulder was slow for a dame who used to lead a refractory pack. Substructure had shifted, ornaments peeled back on her life.  A cancer and double mastectomy survivor, with cataracts, and the paper chain of osteoporosis, Veronica had no circles, no firm spots left on her body, and little chance of adventure.  She got up several times a night to pee, sometimes just for the fun of it, and  because, though most everything that came from genes, from chromosomes was mush, oddball bent remained.

Today was Veronica's birthday.   She was eighty-nine.

Veronica stood at the edge of the road, her thumb up.

A battered jeep approached, stopped.  A girl with purple hair, a bar through her eyebrow, a stud in her nose, and a "Ride the Wind" tattoo on her forearm asked, "Whatsup, Sister?"

"Could use a ride to town.  Looking for a job.  I heard Wal-Mart is hiring."

"Bitchin," the purple-haired girl said with a smile.  "Hop in, Girlfriend."

And away they went in a cloud of exhaust and a swell of Rap music, both of them laughing, toward town where, of course, there were always the judgmental, the obliging, who would wave, roll eyes and laugh back.