I used to think happiness was something you could achieve if you played your cards right all night and didn’t make any bets the dealer wouldn’t make himself, and that once you had it in your blood that it would stay with you like a Lyme disease that keeps sucking from you even after it fell off. But I didn’t know then that, when I thought about wanting more happiness to reel back in laughter from, as it tickled my sides like long, windy fingers, what I really wanted more of was the kind of respect that shows up at your door at an odd hour and asks for some advice. When I drop the happiness narrative into oblivion like an old pair of favorite jeans that haven’t fit for years and just think for a moment about respect, I’m reminded that I have a fair, if not better than average-sized glop of it buzzing around me, an observation I measure by recounting everyday moments that seem to exist outside of time, when someone looked up to me for doing something with the shovel of integrity, or perhaps for just doing something messy and smelly that they wouldn’t do. More importantly though, I think I’m beginning to respect myself for standing up for those smaller and more innocent autistic students I’m honored to work with. I’m simply proud to be a light for them, the way a few in my life have been a light for me, you know who you are. Now I just have to figure out who makes me laugh like a porpoise, the way I make my students laugh.
Published by Chris Russell
Hi, I'm Chris, and thank you so much reader for visiting my blog and wanting to learn a little bit about me. I know time is a hot commodity these days, more so now than ever I think, which is why it’s my hope that you make it a priority to read my poems under some low light when you have some time on your hands and can really read and reread them closely and experience something shining in them. It’s my sincerest hope that they make you want to look at yourself, your world, and poetry itself a little differently, while they also encourage you to be more kind and gentle with yourself and others. I know when I read a poem, regardless of its subject, I expect to feel asked in and touched by its speaker. Sometimes it happens. Sometimes it doesn’t. That’s the way it goes, right? It would be great though if some of these poems brushed against you. As for when I write, it’s always my intention to lift and exteriorize more understandably complex emotions and states of consciousness I’m currently experiencing, and it's usually through an analysis and highly conscious reframing of my childhood that this happens, though I’ve been known to veer into writing surreal-like absurdism and allegorical prose poetry when the wind splits me that way. Where am I on the planet? This MFA in Writing fossil with an ever expanding Dad bod now lives and works in Concord, New Hampshire where I currently divide much of my time between writing, blogging, assisting middle school students who have special needs, and navigating the journey that is my own really unimpressive, but no less valuable dark night. From my own cave in the wilderness, I’d like to say thanks again for stopping by and spending some of your invaluable time. I invite you to please put your feet up and subscribe for a while, and if you’re feeling moved by one of my poems please share it with a dear friend, preferably someone who doesn’t like poetry. View all posts by Chris Russell