I am making a present for a friend who I am not sure is a friend. There are a lot of people in my life now who I am not sure are friends. The present is a pillow, a small cushion. I like pillows, I like lots of pillows of all stripes. My friend jibes me about my strange handiwork. Thus, for her gift I made a foam cover of rectangles sewn as straightly as I could without measuring, with only a rare pin. There was a bit of slack in it, because who wants ever to cut too small. To tighten, I have taken fine yarn and blanket stitched the edges...so far. The cover consists of simple rectangles on each face of the oblong of foam; each rectangle is a plaid with an emphasis on green. The yarn edging is green. You, my jury, consider this: the fabric was given to me as a treasure of remnants from my friend, the bespoke designer. The yarn was a score at a thrift store. My friend, for whom is this gift, haunts thrift stores, sales, recipes for frugality. We are forever up-cycling. The materials have this message of union. I am making her this gift because I think she's my friend---of late, I am most unsure of this title among my acquaintances anymore. This uncertainty is connected to her jibe of my strangeness. I was unaware for a goodly while of what has now come to be called Otherness.
Recently, social media has lit up from my writer cyber-buddies on the subject of the apparent lack of concern by the Associated Writers Program for disability inclusion. Now, I have responded in cyber with the sentiment that AWP is a country club. Along the way, I have read essays posted as both status comments and blog entries regarding the various lifestyles of those who self-identify as disabled. Huzzah!
I do not confess my disability. My sister was loudly disabled, and my formative years were a soft nightmare. We no longer speak.
Any Otherness I might have had was silenced. Over the years, I have
I am, apparently, Other to everyone. Oh, I have tried to ally myself a plenty. Not as gruesomely as did my sister, who chased joining with a starving dog's desperation, but nonetheless. Once I had a profoundly Other boyfriend. I loved his Otherness, though he was naughty, as I have loved the Otherness in all who I love. Anyway, we were sitting at a stoplight under an overpass of an endlessly-under-construction superhighway. In the shadowed dirt of the street was a bus stop. We had been having a conversation between his fugue states of how his Otherness frightened people. At the stoplight was his split-second confession of how this had hurt him: he rolled his eyes and stuck out his tongue, Noh dancer lion, with great sardonism said "I'm scary".
I don't intend my Otherness to frighten, but ---sigh---it does. So I am making a pillow for my friend who I hope is my friend. Maybe I will embroider a phrase; maybe I will further embellish the edging.
It is raining again because the Ass Saw the Angel, the sea rises from the sky, and I weep for horses' feet.