Sunday, September 14, 2014
A Change in the Song
This week there was a change in my perspective in how I see myself, in how I perceive others as seeing me. I truly feel I am coming into my own. I am achieving and have achieved some of my goals; goals so many years in coming, that I hardly recognize them now that they are near. Oh, I will never be perfect, but I can settle for “being perfect at being imperfect.”
“They Will Never Write Songs about Me” was a poem I wrote 20 years ago. This was my signature poem; a poem that stated how I felt about myself and how I was learning to understand and accept who I was/am. To this day, I cannot read or recite this poem without tears:
They Will Never Write Songs about Me
Sometimes I feel so insignificant
so useless, so unimportant.
I am certainly nobody’s hero,
never one to be looked up to
never to stand out in a crowd.
I will never BE somebody.
I am destined to stand in periphery
and they will never ever write songs about me.
Sometimes I get a glimpse beyond;
a glimpse, a fragile glimpse
of parted curtain, thinning veil.
What is it I see beyond the beyond?
clouded view of what could be,
cannot tell if it’s really me;
fear pulls the shade, no longer free,
and they will never ever write songs about me.
At times I am uncomfortable
when I look upon myself.
Who do I think I am
to dream I can be different?
So I continue to live in shadow
hovering between fear and wanna be.
I know that no one will ever see,
know too, they will never write songs about me.
But, to know I have a purpose
in the greater scheme of life,
to dare to make my stand,
to know I have a choice.
I AM one who lives in both worlds,
I guess it’s my destiny
Living in the periphery
is why they will never write songs about me.
Out of the well of darkness
of heartache and despair,
comes words to release the pain, the grief
and it’s these I wish to share:
fame and fortune care not for me,
open heart, open hand for all to see,
Letting everyone know it’s okay with me
that they will never ever write songs about me.
It came to me as I drove around that I have to be careful when out and about, especially in Bradford. Yes, the vanity plate on my Ford Escape gives me away, but it’s not only that; people know who I am. Those who read the “InterTown Record” see my name as editor, on articles, in my weekly Bradford Neighbors column, and under photos. They’ve seen my artwork displayed at various venues. They’re coming to know me (and I, them) as I search out people to interview.
Yesterday, I realized from the greetings I received that the poem is no longer accurate. I am recognized about town and if people don’t know me by sight, they know my name. (I remember how I felt a couple years ago meeting Laura Jean Whitcomb, editor of “Kearsarge Magazine.” I felt I was meeting a celebrity.)That was a big revelation, an eye opener. Oh, it’s been slowly building, but yesterday’s conversations made me feel a bit like I am a local celebrity. (It’s also humbling to think that. Who am I to think that of myself?)
However, before I get too big of a head, I am also very aware of my short comings. How wonderful it is when people nod greetings with smiles and often speak, but I am terrible with names and it’s embarrassing to admit it. I wait for a hint while they are talking to give me a clue to their name. I recognize the faces, know I’ve met them before, but the names or who exactly they are elude me. It makes me feel guilty. They know me, I should remember them!
I talk about the need for editing and proofreading and yet, I still make mistakes. Every time I write an article for the paper, I worry if I got the facts right, that people will like what I wrote, and I feel bad when I make a mistake. And of course, no one realizes how hard it is for me to actually “go out in the world” to get the interviews or cover a story or event. I struggle with groups. Still, I am making the effort and getting better at it.
Yesterday’s revelation is putting me into a whole different awareness. I want to be more careful how I act (and react) – and I realize that’s exactly what I need to do – act. The acting doesn’t mean I am pretending to be someone I’m not. I would never be comfortable in that kind of a role. This acting means that I have to shine my inner light, not hide behind insecurities, and always be courteous and friendly. I want to appear upbeat and positive. I want to hold my head high and exude a confident, but humble, attitude.
I always want to be nice, but now I am more aware of that need. I have to remember to smile when, for the most part, I am a somber person. I’m happy and content on the inside mostly, but I don’t always portray exuberance. I want to be a courteous driver and smile and wave at people I pass. I want to take my time, let others go first, etc. I want to be known for being a good writer, artist, photography and an all-around good person.
Most of all, I just want people to like me. I want them to like and admire my work. I want to sell my books, drawings, photographs, and other work; not only because of the need to make a living, (which I do need) but for the joy of sharing what I love.
“They Will Never Write Songs about Me” is changing… I am changing, have changed. They never will write songs about me, but people know who I am now or they’ve at least heard my name. I can no longer say, “I will never be somebody…” because I AM somebody. We are all somebodies and we need to know it and own it! I am “living the life of an artist” and that makes me so happy. I love what I do.
A new poem will be forthcoming…