Observing Humanity at Ease

Driving along the highway this morning, I came upon a woman walking alone on the side of the road. I found her to be an odd sight, it was raining, there wasn’t a sidewalk per se, and she was walking away from an industrial region of the city. I looked around to see a stalled vehicle, or something to indicate why she was walking in the rain, with a phone to her ear, not looking particularly stressed but out of sync with her reality.

I then wondered how I might possibly know her reality, what her life was, why she would be walking in the first place, and finally why I would be wondering about this stranger on the road in the early morning hours. My first immediate thought was this was a woman walking by herself in an unfamiliar area. The first thing that went through my mind was she was vulnerable. I thought about whether or not she was safe. My next thought was I had no idea what her life was, and perhaps this was a daily routine she employed to walk to work, and she was just on the phone occupying her time on a typical walk. I then thought about my own world.

How often do I walk alone in an unfamiliar area to get from one place to another? I usually have my car, and if I’m somewhere that is not routine, I’m perhaps on my bicycle exploring, or vacationing with a purpose to go wherever I do happen to land. I wondered about the routine of our lives, how compact and determined our lives may be, without a lot of risk for adventure beyond planned events. In my eyes, this woman was on a journey of unusual circumstances, and perhaps I was making my noting of her presence far more impactful than it was.

I couldn’t help think about how purposely safe our lives are in today’s society. Though we have anxiety in our choices, our risks, and our opportunities, in general, I believe our lives are fairly preserved with always familiar protective boundaries. We are not often found in places of risk, or spontaneity that might upset the natural scheme of things, we call our reality. At least that was the overwhelming feeling I got when encountering this human being, walking in the rain, talking on her telephone, along a busy highway feet trampling the gravel where no walkway existed.

I wonder sometimes, what are the circumstances of our lives that help create the burden of anxiety we sometimes carry around with ourselves. For me, I have the opportunity to recognize addictions to be a major piece of what compels my inner thinking when contemplating my decisions. In the case of the woman on the highway, there was a time when I might be compelled to stop and ask where she was going, part of a ploy to find mutual attraction in the moment.

I wonder how it is we find ourselves in the trappings of creating visible shields to protect our lives from the society around us. We don’t wish to be judged or thrown into a category of miscreant. We wish only to be seen in the best light, and though this person I encountered on the highway probably lives an extremely normal life, in this one moment I placed her in a completely different world, one filled with a bounty of suspicious analysis that helps us the observer feel we are doing right in our own lives. At least that was my takeaway for myself on this rainy day in autumn.

Perhaps a sunny day with temperatures in the 80’s might have presented a more plausible observation. Today though, I am reminded just how sheltered our lives have become where it is an abnormal sight to see a human being walking along a busy highway with no visible means of explanation beyond their existence.

Fortunately, I have enough gasoline in my tank to get me from point A to B, preserving my stake in this societal machinery we plan our lives around.

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Energy Drive

In my home town

there is a street named

Energy Drive

I often think of that avenue

wondering if I stood on a curb

I might soak in that guidance

be drawn by the concept of its strength.

I understand the name

is drawn from industry

symbolic of discovery

Yet, I need to capture

that essence.

Ever notice the happy sense

of good energy

Always see the value

good thoughts can bring to our lives.

Yes the moments exist

that tear our hearts apart,

the tears remain when sensing fear,

the world seems less friendly …

Only when we allow ourselves to remain

alone enough to sap our energy.

Imagine pleasant thoughts

a desire to provide happiness

a genuine smile

shocking as it may seem

there are many of us that decide

upon our day

by the energy we engage.

We are energy driven,

polar opposites that attract.

When a negative wave reacts

call it a vortex

we seek shelter

we back pedal

we often haven’t a clue

how we ever got there.

Upon a distant star

traveling through the night

an optimistic response

allows our lives to become

that fragment,

that piece of life,

a strong purveyor of the resource of

Energy Drive.

DIscreet Empathy

That is when you wonder

about the person on the other side

riding in public

they’re traveling in a world

unlike our own

yet, vastly different,

probably, more likely

we can ascertain only their look

their frame of mind

discreetly empathetic

to everyone around them

their world their own

not yours, not mine, not theirs

everyone together can somehow

realize, recognize, reconcile

and go public rather than rely upon

discreet empathy.

My Ramblings

I’ve been thinking
The whole thing
This quest for what is real
Utter bullshit
I mean, c’mon now
How many different ways
Can we be told that our lives could be
Might be, have to be, driven by
Some sort of desire to feel like, that was how
I began every sentence with a notion
To examine what went right and what
Truly is really wrong
With this world
With this life
With this street sign
With this color of my hair
Each time I imagine I have figured it out
I try to recreate a moment
When it really did go wrong
Because it is there that I can have tangible
Evidence of just truly, quite remarkably
How really human I have become.