It’s not a letter imprinted on my forehead,
but a permanent brand, nevertheless.
A reason to be ‘written off,’ no matter my patience,
nor my life’s redemptive arc, or stellar record of maintenance,
my clearest, most quiet days are drowned out by the noise
and the fog of others’ uncertainty, no matter my poise.
Difficult – it’s been that. Optimistic – I’m still that.
But just like the label on the back of your clothes –
you’re judged by it, put in a box, and I’ve been trapped.
I don’t mind, though, the territory it comes with;
Exiled to roam this land’s steep peaks, low valleys, and unpredictable weather,
I’ve learned to snowboard and rock climb, and I keep getting better. – RSM