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Scripted

We play by the rules,

good boys and girls,

hoping for some grand prize:

gold star, A-plus.

Suit up. Show up.
Check the boxes.
Pay your mortgage.
Always say
please and thank you.

In our cozy cages,
our lives defined by policy,
we revel in the certainty
that we are the lucky ones.
This is liberty.

Climb the ladder.
Comb your hair.
Dress like us.
Don't argue.
Read the rules
and play along.

You believed them
when they said
you weren't smart enough,
not good enough or strong enough
on your own.

She's not for you.
You can't have two.
Pay attention!
Do as we do.

It must be this way
or you're damned.

You heard the key in the lock.
You thought it trapped you in.
Your script doesn't say
keys can open
as well as close.

We create our definitions.
Boundaries are where we set them.
The rest is just the ephemera
of our limited
minds.

This is a Sunday Scribblings post.

8 comments:

jaerose said...

'Climb the ladder. Comb your hair.' fantastic..I gave up combing..and ladders many years ago..but as you wisely say that wasn't the end of boundaries..sometimes self-inflicted scripts can be as limiting as society's..maybe shaking the old tresses and shinning up a rope would be good..beautifully written..as ever..jae

July 15, 2012 at 11:04 AM
Josie Two Shoes said...

I loved this piece! You spoke so well of all the limitations life places on us... or rather we place on ourselves! One cannot read this without stopping to think about the perceived limits we've blindly accepted... great writing!

July 15, 2012 at 11:46 AM
becca said...

we are only limited by our own doing

July 15, 2012 at 11:51 AM
Granny Smith said...

And how wonderful when we finally break free!

July 15, 2012 at 1:56 PM
oldegg said...

You write this as though you have borne both restriction and set yourself free. We may a lucky few that have seen the light and know that life is for living. "Non, je ne regrette rien."

July 15, 2012 at 3:17 PM
Susan Helene Gottfried said...

Holy SHIT, Ann. I was just now driving home in tears, thinking I needed to e-mail you about the slap in the face I'd just received and here you've gone and posted a poem about exactly what I was going through.

Which, of course, reinforces the fact that you are the right person to talk to about this. Except... you put it so beautifully, I don't have to anymore.

July 15, 2012 at 4:40 PM
Alice Audrey said...

Excellent slice of life. Or should I say slice AT life. I've known a lot of people who ended up holding the key and not able to find the lock.

July 16, 2012 at 11:43 AM
Cressida de Nova said...

Well you have said it all..life is difficult..thought povoking poem..you can lock your self in or you can lock yourself out..Ha I don't have the answers.

July 16, 2012 at 12:43 PM