i am determined to be something other than what i am. i am determined to find the something that is me, to write, to be, in fact, a writer and to not feel helpless and emptied next to the colossalness of the phd in my midst. to not project colossalness onto the phd beside me, that which i helped to create and mold and grow with these hands and this heart in constant and unwaivering eight-and-a-half-year dedication. i am determined to determine what it is that becomes me without him, that becomes me without dependency, that becomes me with this brain and heart and eyes and these now half-crippled hands that can again type at least thanks to twice weekly visits to the hand clinic where i am stimulated electronically after being warmed with pulverized corn husks in swirling hot air and before being cooled from the aching with frozen gel packs strapped to the wrist. now my unfeeling fingers can move by memory and with the aid of sight across our ergonomic keyboard and can hit the "h" key far too often for some unknown reason though the words that would make me a writer have not exactly come yet and have not precisely been forced out in such ways to help me not fall into the unknowing and constant doubting of this self, this soul, this body that left-handedly is yet still dedicated to ceaseless housecleaning and wiping running nineteen month old noses and the chasing of the four year old from out the kitchen away from the vegan chocolate muffins. i go to occupational therapy and am confronted with the boldness of boys who utilize their mother's suburban cash flow to pursue an art career, pointlessly painting rubber tires with justifications of texture and explorations of the mundane. i wonder what made me so underestimate my self worth as to never pursue a higher education in art or writing creatively then recall how much i hated school and hate it still, but feel ultimately diminished to "just a mom" status yet again. then i witness the working poor, injured while working and ignorantly postponing filing for workman's compensation and feel flooded with intense and heartbreaking gratitude for my own privilege and sense simultaneous pressure to transcend my skill-less, money-less position in life, to never get old or broken again and never to face the bottomless pit of despair that is that sort of acute poverty. i have witnessed and learned of it and while wishing and working to transform the world, also am compelled to run far far away, to avoid the level of understanding and knowing look in my eye that comes only with firsthand experience. and so i am determined and i point myself in the direction of self-worth via me defined as i am, me the writer, me the written, typing daily and furiously, at times stuck and staring, yet determined with half-assed ideas in hand to whittle and work it until i've got it, until i've got something, whatever it might be or become. in honor of my renewed sense of dedication and thirty to forty percent regained use of the right hand, i propose that i write one poem daily in the month of february, and continue it as long as i can sustain it after. i find that poetry is a mode of writing that can change to suit one's mood, thus moving from abstraction to narration and back again day to day whilst remaining the same author with largely the same intentions and still necessitating skillfulness and mindfulness which will fit my limitations as well as my need for a challenge to keep me focused and forward-moving. i am set. here i go.

my hand bending back due to self-inflicted therapeutic electrocution

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