poet Lawrence S. Pertillar

Lawrence S. Pertillar

Casting One's Own Shadow

Call your trip whatever you wish.
I've learned not to debate, argue...
Or 'franchise' anyone's opinion,
As if to make mine!
Nor do I agree to evaluate...
Someone's statement,
Whether a line given to solicit...
An opinion I've given in anything I've written.

I've learned an exchange of experiences,
Is not a possibility.
And I've learned this by listening.
And this many people seldom do.

I've been up and down too many times,
To discover my own comprehension...
About life.
My life and how 'my' life is connected.

When I found criticisms made of me by others...
'Added' to my understanding,
If right, wrong or indifferent when given...
I still had to brush my own teeth.
Walk on my own two feet!
And be accountable for my own actions.

I stopped making excuses,
When they began not to make sense to me.
I spent more time defending myself...
Instead of living my life.
And I began to do that...
When I started to appreciate myself.

And 'if' I was to give my advice to anyone...
AND...
I did say 'if'.
I would say this...
If anyone finds they are seeking acceptance,
On a path they have chosen to take...
It is not a path they have chosen.
How can it be?

How can someone declare something theirs,
When others can do the same thing thing?
If voices can be heard?
Footprints can be seen?
And the path one takes has already been paved?
That is following...
Not casting,
One's own shadow!

I do not wish,
I demand people to get out of my light.
What would be the point,
If I am patiently waiting for someone else to decide...
Whether or not they want to move out of it?
That kind of time I am not giving to anyone!
Period.

I've learned many lessons.

Poem Submitted: Friday, January 21, 2011

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