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Disability Arts Online

It never had to be perfect / 8 March 2016


I listened to the tree breathing.
I listened in the silence of high
white cloud lazing over turquoise
gleam; the firmament listened
as tree-breath settled awesome
round my warm and languid body.
I listened to the tree drinking,
drawing the fallen sky into its
gnarled limbs as my own knotted
and twisted with time. I listened
to the tree singing as my own song
filled and refilled the space
between me and eternity.
I don't have to see through the label
disabled, I can see a fine edited version
unblinkered by cultural expectations;
unfixed by the security of being one
of us. I am always another. Half this
or that opens a vast expanse of
possibility and closes deep and
segregating silence between me
and your comforting certainties.
Disabled is your label
disabled is your view of my world;
disabled by your lack of awareness
your disability to see outside the
parameters of your own locked-in
sufficiency. 
I am one with the breath of trees
settling molecules and atoms into the earth
as the firmament watches and my own song
fills and refills the space; the spaces
that open like a flower, a lover,
and close on my segregation;
on the passing of time
that joins me to tree-breath
settles me round about myself
inside and outside,
one and another.