Skip to main content

Scars in My Mind

The first weekend of June we headed for the Como Zoo and Conservatory, in St. Paul. We went to see butterflies and flowers, which we did. But it isn't images of butterflies I keep seeing at night. Instead, it is a person I keep seeing.

She was thin,
much too thin...
Her face was older than her age,
Thin blond hair,
straight and shoulder length
Shorts and tank-top,
basic denim and pastels
Painted nails,
feet and hands a midnight blue
And scars.
On her right arm,
patterns and shapes,
On her left arm,
lines of various widths
They burned into my eyes,
Like looking into bright lights
everywhere I looked
I saw her scars
I wanted to talk to her,
to ask her questions
Is it feeling too much
or feeling too little
That makes us want pain?
She was familiar,
this random stranger
With her scars
And I keep seeing her,
wondering about her
She will be alright,
I tell myself
Perfectionism gone awry?
Anger kept silent?
Pain beyond words?
Or simply scars...


  1. Interesting poem about scars, about memory. No one is certain of the cause of cutting, but it appears to be a compulsion, an attempt to feel good in one's own skin, so to speak. The body/mind seems hostage to habit.


Post a Comment

Comments violating the policies of this blog will not be approved for posting. Language and content should be appropriate for all readers and maintain a polite tone. Thank you.

Popular posts from this blog

Autism, Asperger's, and IQ

"Aren't people with Asperger's more likely to be geniuses? Isn't genius related to autism?"

A university student asked this in a course I am teaching. The class discussion was covering neurological differences, free will, and the nature versus nurture debate. The textbook for the course includes sidebars on the brain and behavior throughout chapters on ethics and morality. This student was asking a question reflecting media portrayals of autism spectrum disorders, social skills difficulties, and genius.

I did not address this question from a personal perspective in class, but I have when speaking to groups of parents, educators, and caregivers. Some of the reasons these questions arise, as mentioned above, are media portrayals and news coverage of autism. Examples include:
Television shows with gifted characters either identified with or assumed to have autistic traits: Alphas, Big Bang Theory, Bones, Rizzoli and Isles, Touch, and others. Some would include She…

Listen… and Help Others Hear

We lack diversity in the autism community.

Think about what you see, online and in the media. I see upper-middle class parents, able to afford iPads and tutors and official diagnoses. I see parents who have the resources to fight for IEPs and physical accommodations.

I see self-advocacy leadership that has been fortunate (and hard working, certainly) to attend universities, travel the nation (or even internationally), and have forums that reach thousands.

What I don't see? Most of our actual community. The real community that represents autism's downsides. The marginalized communities, ignored and excluded from our boards, our commissions, our business networks.

How did my lower-income parents, without college educations, give me a chance to be more? How did they fight the odds? They did, and now I am in a position of privilege. But I don't seem to be making much of a difference.

Demand that your charities seek out the broadest possible array of advisers and board members.…

Life Updates: The MFA Sprint

Life is okay, if more than a little hectic at the end of this first month.

With one month down, I'm 11 months away from my MFA in Film and Digital Technology. Though things might happen and things do go wrong, so far I'm on schedule and things are going well —— though I'm exhausted and working harder than I did for any other degree. Because the MFA requires projects every week, this isn't as easy to schedule as writing. Even researching a paper can be done from the comfort of home, at any hour.

You cannot make movies by yourself, at any time of day. It doesn't work that way. Filming takes time, and often requires a team of people. It's not comparable to working alone on a degree in writing or rhetoric.

The team-based nature of film is exhausting for me, but I enjoy the results. I also like the practical nature of the skills being taught. You either learn how to adjust ISO, f/Stop, shutter speed, and other variables or you don't. You can have theories …