Everyday Compassion – Day 2 – Poetry Month

plastic bottle floating on lake litter everyday compassionIt’s true I have trouble with you,
With everyday compassion,
Because
It means forgiving the person
Who drops poop bags to the ground–
Listening between sarcastic comments for
Pain and fatigue. Everyday compassion the
Off-gassed namesake of
Life.

I’ll have to be
More than OK with rigid people–
Got to
See myself in them, to
Assume inflexibility
Springs from
Common awe,
Actions exacted and undignified and
So meaningless a life floats
Separated from all others.
And to this
Inconsequentiality, how I must
Practice
Crooning a lullaby.

Or not. To suffer the cause of
Everyday compassion, I see I
Must be plain
OK
With unenlightenment and even
Honor somehow
Guns in bedside tables
Gas guzzling Humvees
Pedophile neighbors
Terrorist teenagers and
Their suicide vests.

Everyday, my mouth clamors its
Judgments.
If I am good,
I am interrupted.
An omniscient wrong
Twinned with
Perpetuating rejection–

I am interrupted.

How do I love thee?
She asked before the
Murders came.
Let me count the ways,
The ways around and
Through and
under and
Addled and
Cleft.

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Elizabeth Howard

Elizabeth writes literary non-fiction, haiku, cultural rants, and Demand Poetry in order to forward the cause of beautiful writing. She teaches and speaks about the rhetorical impact of beautiful writing. A recent transplant to Connecticut, she calls London, Kansas City, and Iowa home.

 

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  2 comments for “Everyday Compassion – Day 2 – Poetry Month

  1. Lisa
    April 2, 2017 at 6:05 pm

    Everyday compassion ought not replace upholding basic standards of decency with acceptance of wrong. It ought to be a pathway to empathy. It ought not excuse every slip downward, but acknowledge that we all slip, but from a place where we mutually agree we should stand.

    • April 4, 2017 at 9:15 am

      I think I agree with what you are saying, Lisa, in the reverse? The idea of a pathway to empathy leads to compassion, even with the acceptance of wrong.

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