Let me state unequivocally that if you were hoping to read something perfect, sorry, not gonna happen. I write to my own beat, an irregular rhythm that doesn’t follow rules, it simply flows and pulses and is. That doesn’t excuse accidental mistakes of spelling, punctuation or grammar. But my perception of those things may differ from yours too and besides that, nothing is perfect. Ever. So the sooner you accept it, the sooner you can stop expecting it and being disappointed by life and the people in yours. Whether friends, relatives, significant others, neighbors (oh yeah, neighbors are prone to not being perfect). Pets, celebrities, heroes, politicians (politicians will say what you want to hear, and paint a rosy picture of a perfect world, so of course they will let you down — but those who achieve something notable are the ones to remember).
Personally, I demand imperfection! It saves me a lot of time and trouble. Trying to be perfect in an imperfect world is like swimming against a tsunami. You really shouldn’t try that!
Give in to the slightly off. See the beauty in the asymmetric and quirky elements around us. If everything looked the same and unextraordinary, think how dull the world would be. There must be madness, must be corruption, must be treason, must be canyons, must be volcanoes, must be bad weather, and must be monsters.
No matter how perfect a person may seem, there will always be tiny (or glaring) defects and wrinkles that bring to light the fact he or she is merely human. Not that I’m saying we shouldn’t strive to be as close to perfect as possible, to improve ourselves and seek to do better when we fail or falter. I’m just saying that we shouldn’t sweat small stuff or refuse to inflexibly forgive. Sometimes to forgive is to love and we shouldn’t blame others for our own flaws or lack of understanding, for the inability to listen or give compassion. We shouldn’t consider mistakes unforgivable without considering first the heart and mind, along with the circumstances and prevailing winds that drove this individual to commit an error of whatever proportions. Within reason, we should do our best to not give up on someone we love.
That which defines us is rarely our total sum, but rather some of our most outstanding features. And then there’s our own perception of ourselves, the way we imagine we are. This can deviate dramatically from the way others view us. It can tilt and shift and grow as we cut ourselves slack, or realize that what we think is bad might seem pretty darn good or not half so bad to somebody else. Like those minor imperfections we blow out of proportion that don’t matter to anyone but us, and perhaps a gaggle of people whose opinions don’t really count.
Yet we may form habits that are not so good and need to be given up, sacrificed or abandoned because it isn’t who we are anymore . . . isn’t healthy or wise, rational or proper. Maybe it hurts those we care about deepest and least wish to harm. The ones who are close enough to be the most injured, the most affected by reckless or compulsive acts.
It can be difficult to improve. Sometimes we just need somebody to believe in us to make us try harder. Somebody to serve as a moral compass, a Jiminy Cricket, an angel on our shoulder. Whether reflected in the glaring light of scorn or gazing from the lenses of our introspective looking-glasses, we may excuse and justify lapses in judgement as easily as to criticize ourselves and others. Don’t give in to the Dark Side. Be yourself, as long as you can live with who you are.
Sure, we expect products we buy to meet certain standards. We expect people to behave within limits. We impose restrictions and regulations in an effort to achieve a sense of justice and peace and stability in an unjust and chaotic and unstable world. Some causes are worth fighting for and we have to try. We have to keep trying. We can never give up the battle. As we can never stop aiming to do better, be better, live better, and find “happiness”.
We can be happy in an imperfect world. Not every second. Not every day all day. But for moments, and sometimes immense measures. We can find joy. And peace. And hope. Whether it’s inside ourselves or shared with others. Whether it’s fair or unbalanced or complicatedly uncommon. We need to accept and adjust to an offbeat tempo, to the highs and lows and topsy-turvies, while remaining true to our hearts. Not perfect. Not plastic. Not without problems and suffering and knots and blunders. Just human. And trying our best to stay that way.
A stray inkle-think assembled
Out of the froth of one surly eve
And flutter-flappent through the street
Would land upon a peeve
A chicken crowed she had laid an egg
How the coop did whoop and celebrate
On this day was born a marvelous thing
For the shell would glitter and vibrate
What could be inside? Were the hens aflutter!
They clucked and cackled and surmised
Nothing too outlandish for their guesses
But in the end, all would be surprised . . .
What should hatch and wiggle from the egg
Was the queerest creepiest abnormalty
So imperfect that they thought it evil
And named the creature Frickassee
The poor demon spawn had many peepers
A spider smirk and bumpy skin
It growled and puled and flapped bald wingtips
On ostrich legs most tall and thin
Featherless, its mottled flesh
Would crawl as if a mass of bugs
Uncute it was, and twice as ugly
The chickadee had lips like slugs
Well, nothing strange can be accepted
Without some fuss and a price to pay
Being treated as an abomination
The inferior critter stomped away
To travel endless trails of searching
For other oddness and different strokes
While the hen who laid the unnatural egg
Would become the butt of chicken jokes
At last in a slanting and distant village
Of moose-horned goats and alpen sheep
Sad Frickassee must meet his doom
From a pitchfork posse without a bleep
The mob cooked him up and ate him gladly
And Frickassee did they call their meal
Wanting more, they would seek the poultry-geist
But complete imperfections are never real.
the sight for sore eyes
There are sights to behold around the world
Both wonders and atrocities
The vast, amazing, and incomparable
The horrors of wars and poverties
In none of my morbid predilections
Have I ever doubted what I could view
Until one day my eyes opened wider
And everything suddenly seemed brand new
I gazed around in startled glory
Enthralled by a vibrance never seen
Shades ne’er so black in stunning contrast
To the brilliant tones of this newfound sheen
How I danced and skipped, sang a merry tune
Feeling young again and so alive
It was like the world had been recreated
And I from a dark sleep must revive
Yet it seemed too good, too beautiful
That I had to ask, Could this truly be?
I know nothing’s perfect, I expect the worst
For my luck is fraught by misery
Would the vision last or fade to gray?
Could a dream survive in my waking hours?
Now my hopes and heart had been uplifted
So I made a wish to the higher powers
That I could believe in this miracle setting
And not wake to find it all in vain
A shattered myth, a scattered memory
Of something treasured just cheap and plain
When the landscape wavered as if to dissolve
I expected a barren wasteland behind
A flimsy veil masking harsh terrain
And gone what had taken a lifetime to find
Then I turned around and there it was
Solid and shimmering, not a mere dream
Yet fallible too, a bit dimmer at times
But a better life waited for all it could seem
Dare I trust in this splendor to resist my fears?
It takes time and courage, some compromise
To embrace on faith an uncharted journey
Through the spirit and soul of a sight for sore eyes.
What have you when there isn’t anything left —
A blackholish void in which all is consumed?
I bet it would swallow itself in the end
And nothing would have nothing whatsoever to do!
In the absence of everything I’d be rather bored
So I hope it won’t happen anytime soon
I prefer to ramble about something or other
And may wax a bit whimsical, a daffy loon
It’s my habit to blab it what pops in my head
Be it incomprehensible spillious gab
Out it must come or my brain would quite rupture
Flinging out thoughts like a nuclear confab
So listen to me or avoid me like plague
If there isn’t a choice then there’s no hope for you
I’ll warn you to cover your ears and escape
Lest my whimsical nature should infectuate you
Yes, run while there’s time unless it’s too late
At which point you will soon be a babbling fool
I will spread through your veins until you’re addicted
The last stage is madness and there may be some drool
How I pity your plight should you be so unlucky
It’s a tragic loss to wind up like me
Unable to speak without sounding silly
There’s no cure, no hope for the whim malady.
out of sorts
Once upon a monster
I stubbed my toe in fear
And there before my very eyes
Did everything glow sheer
By alabaster moonshine
And scintillatious fog
The dead did rise with creakish clamor
Fit to tie a hog
I’d never have imagined
Nor even been as daunted
If not for clammy palms of corpses
Slapping me so haunted
When from a tombish corner
Did separate a Goth
The type of which could steal you blind
A frigid behemoth
His graven visage furrowed
A million wrinkles churning
While mist arose like steam and smoke
And set my soul to burning
I’ll never be the same
Nor ever less afrighted
As if dubbed Scaredy Skittish Daredy
And by a banshee nighted
It left me out of sorts
And certainly disgruntled
For from the cloak of pithy murk
Would slither Fear confrontled
A dank perditious scamper
Of many dainty feet
The tiptoed trepid tootsies tapped
A bold staccato beat
As petrified I stood
Within my gloom and doomish thrall
An angry warbler’s piercing call
Hair prickled on my nape
A tingle jangled up my spine
And ever would I hope
To grab a stick and etch a line
Until the ground arose
A cloud of whorling dust and sand
Ungainly in its depth
Enveloping my second hand
But here my tale concludes
As I was drawn into the gullet
Of my greatest terror, flying dirt
And from there I’ll have to mull it.