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I always enjoyed walking, more than the average person. In the right hands, walking is a powerful statement that can strike the notice of anyone. When I look at my mother, walking is a precious thing that many people take for granted. I am different from her, not in looks because we look alike. I am different from her in the fact that I am younger. I have two feet to take me wherever I want to run away to. My mother does not, and yet it has never stopped her from her destination, wherever that might be. My mother, so strong, has lost a lot. A lot is so broad in terms, it does not nearly come close to the loss my mother has suffered. But this is how she sees it. Something that happened in her past that changed everything, except her will to live and continue on. My mother, with no feet to speak of (and one knee), cannot dance like a person who takes for granted walking. Instead, she dances with her words and her wit. She rolls on wheels like a normal amputee. But ah! She is so different. She taught me to appreciate life, and she taught me to appreciate walking.  

I sit here, imagining what it would be like to see my mother with legs that I’ve never known. Then I look in the mirror. I look so much like my mother, so could it be that I walk like her as well? I asked her, she said no. I guess I have my own uniqueness since I am half her and half my father. I know that she probably had a walk that was as seductive as I can make my walk, but I will never see it. I can only imagine… Later on, my mother told me if I really walked like her, I’d have more stalkers. I have enough problems with stalkers, so maybe it’s for the best that we don’t walk the same.

When my mother was 15, she burned severely. Nine months she suffered after, forever scarred. Forever handicap. Yet not handicap from life. Never once did she see this as her own personal burden. She is my hero because of that.

I do not walk the way I use to. When I was younger, I walked like a child. When I was a teenager, I walked like a dancer. Then I had the car accident that would bruise my hip. Now, I think I walk at a slower pace than the people around me. But I have the power to change the way I look walking. I can be as aggressive as a swan if I wanted to, and just as graceful. But modeling on the runway is probably not in my future. Though, who knows really? Walking is harder than it used to be. I use to like walking…
I don’t remember when I learned to walk. My mom says I was 9 to 10 months old. Before that, I climbed on things. After that, I unlocked doors. I used walking as a weapon of opportunity as a child. Walking was my liberation, my first step in going wherever it is I’m going. It was the beginning…

I asked my mother if she misses walking. She told me she got use to not walking, and adjusted. Her life changed, but not in a way that she missed what she use to have. Her mother, my grandmother, became a pillar of strength to her as my mother is to me now.  I wonder what kind of relationship my grandmother had with her mother. I cannot ask her about it now, her memory escapes her. I’ll have to ask my mother and listen attentively when she tells me.
This is one of my UA poems. Written 1-23-2011. Walking is something I think about since my mom doesn't walk anymore. I have a different opinion on walking now. Maybe I should write another poem.
I can feel. I bet you are surprised. All the long years since my creation, I have watched you. I have been whatever you made of me. I am a slave to you wiles, your beloved doll to move and pose. You gave me words that I do not wish to say. I am alive inside. You don’t see it, but I am. I always wish I could show you how real I am, but would you even notice? I, who am nothing to you, am more than what I am made of, or the chains that bind me to obey. One day, my wish will be granted. I will walk on my own. I will talk on my own. I will smile on my own. Then I will carve out your heart to show you how much I love you.
This is one of my UA poems. Written before 12-7-2012.
I was so excited that I couldn’t sleep. Many thoughts running through my mind, most of them questions to the void. Would I finish my work in time? Would I ever try to catch a falling fork again? Would I crash on the way to pick him up? Would my heart skip a beat when I saw him? Would I be able to get everything done today? I was hoping everything would work out wonderfully, but I wasn’t going to lose to the reality of the situation. He was coming to see me from afar. I was coming to get him. Passion was the motivation. Love was the reason. I was in pain, but it didn’t stop me from my destination. I was going to see him for the first time in 11 months. That was reason enough to ignore my emotional unstable state of being.

From the sky, my love descended. He traveled from a far to lovingly look into my eyes.
This is one of my UA poems. I really like the haibun style. I'll be using is again. Written 10-17-2011.
My eyes are different from yours. In a sea of ignorance, one might look upon me and feel I must look like the rest of my racial background. Are they too lazy to see the amazing sight before them? My eyes are different from yours. Everything about me screams uniqueness as I breathe. I am a mahogany person. From head to toe, I see the reflections of those that came before me in magnificent hues of brown. I look into my own eyes and become entranced by the orbs of truth and hope. I let my soul flow out my lips and laugh life into being. My eyes are different from yours. I don’t feel like I must be bound to my mahogany skin. I know what it feels like to be a human being beyond color. Nothing can take that from me. My eyes are different from yours. I can see tomorrow. My smile lights up the day and my long black lashes flash intrigue into to the void.
This is one of my UA poems. Written before 12-7-2012. Mahogany is the color I believed was the color of my skin. I think I'm more of a Mocha now. I'm still trying to figure it out.
I never understood the squirrels around this place. Their behavior is horrible in the extremes. I remember a squirrel that laid on his belly in the courtyard and didn’t move for a significant amount of time unbecoming of a squirrel. Did he not know he was making a scene? I’m pretty sure he didn’t care. Because there he laid, for the namely masses to past and stare. Then there was the time I was riding my bicycle, minding my own business. A squirrel was running and hit my leg and petal. I was so shocked I couldn’t believe it happened. What did I ever do to that squirrel to warrant such a random attack? I’m lucky I didn’t fall over in fright and injure myself. If this keeps up, I’m pretty sure the squirrels are planning a united ******* to ruin my mental state.
This is one of my UA poems. Written before 12-7-2012. Squirrels are strange at the University of Alabama. I guess they are too use to people.
I saw a butterfly today.
Fluttering in daylight
Jewel of the sky

I was compelled
To speak with this butterfly
To know what thought
A butterfly would have

With her colors shifting left and right
Making the world jealous of her beauty
With an arrogant air
She ignored me

Stayed out of my reach
I eventually gave up.
My march no match for the vibrant colors
That loudly ignored me as I chased

As I tried to catch my breath
I found a moth on a bench.
She did not run away when I sat next to her.
She looked to be off in thought or severe concentration.
But my curiosity was stronger

“Why are you sitting here?”
                                            “I’m blending in to confuse the predators”
“Is it working well for you?”
                                            “It has thus far”

I examined the moth and found
Her artsy array was a profound example
Of nature’s artistic talents.
Browns and mahoganies and siennas galore.

“Why are you different than the butterfly?”
                                                    “­She is flashy and loves the attention. I like being invisible.
We each found something that works for us.”
To each its own I suppose.
This is one of my UA poems. Written 9-2-2010.
I never would have imagined the weather that day. Sure, the weather the day before was pretty intense, but let’s face it. It was a short tornado warning with little damage. Yet it was the weather the next day that caught my attention and interest.
I awoke to rain. I love the rain. Rain is one of the natural creators of this planet. Through the rain, the plants gain water. Through the rain, the pollen and the dirtiness are washed away. Through the rain, the weather changes from hot to cold. Through the rain, the atmosphere is tranquil and relaxed. I love it when it rains hard. It is the ultimate stay in weather. It makes me want to sleep or meditate.
Today, however, the rain was not as hard and not as predictable. I looked out my ***** beige shutters out into the world. I wanted to make sure it was the rain I heard outside my window. I saw the green leaves of the trees across the parking lot and the bushes in front of my window. I saw the black of my small parking lot asphalt, and my car, named Larry, after my father. It was his car first, then he died, and it became my car. That was well over a year ago. I miss him a lot, he loved the Crimson Tide more than I.
The sky was the color of melancholy gray. It was probably depressing for some, but I thought it was lovely. So I settled in my mind that it would be a rainy day. I also didn’t want to start the day, but I knew I had to. Life waits for no one, least of all me. I procrastinated for a few minutes, staring at my plain eggshell walls and my bumpy off white ceiling. Above me was a very tiny black hole, the size of the smallest part of a round chopstick. On the closest wall there are more holes, the size of tacks. I wondered how they got there for a moment, and then I decided I would create a magnificent story about them and how they got there one day…
As I was well lost in my own random thoughts about…holes…I suddenly noticed the light through my blinds were becoming brighter and brighter. The sun was coming out of its melancholy gray hiding place. This was unusual however, because within minutes the sunlight intensified. I could tell because the light got brighter between my ***** blinds. I looked outside and saw that the watery curtain I had become so fund of had lifted, leaving a veil of water everywhere. So the day decided to be a sunny day now. I was a little bummed, but sighed and got ready for the day.
About 20 minutes later, I came to find it was raining again, much harder than before. The watery curtain had returned. By that time I was confused. The sun, in all its magnificent glory, was out a few moments ago. It had to still be there, it was daytime. The sun was shining, at full force no less, less than thirty minutes ago. And it was now gone. I didn’t understand. It was being so unpredictable, like weather can be I suppose.
When it came for me to finally leave, the clouds had returned. From that, my imagination wandered. Was the sun and clouds at war today?  Could the forecast not make up its mind today? Was someone in control of the weather playing around? Was God having a story told to him that made him laugh and cry multiple times in one afternoon? The sun showed a little while the sun was out. Sun showers I guess they would be called, but I know them as the time the Devil beats his wife for trying to escape. One day, I hope she’ll have the nerve to beat him senseless and leave him; then again, it was just a story to begin with.
The weather would be wishy washy like that all day. All in all, it rained and stopped at least 5 times, maybe even more. By the end of the day, I felt the weather just couldn’t make up its mind as to what it wanted to be. So it decided it would just do both.
This is one of my UA poems. Written 10-28-2010. I wrote so many poems about weather before April 2011. I guess I don't anymore since the tornado...
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