Persyn

Every step away from something bad,
Is a step closer to something good.
I know that good and bad is a moral construct –
a socially informed sense of right and wrong
determined by the constant flow and forming of new to old generations.

But, I’m OK with passing that judgement,
because it means that I am learning,
reevaluating my perspective and behaviors with every new gain of information.

I have been concerned with the idea of persynhood.
Spelled with a ‘y.’
And I’m not usually one for frequenting changes in the English language
and muddling with spellings and grammatical structures,
BUT
Our definition of a persyn
is pretty poorly informed.
And by changing the structure of the word,
I call attention to our flawed interpretation.
There is no absolute gender of a persyn,
as there is no gender of a people.

But many of us disagree and argue this point,
negating the very voices who inhabit these truths.
Who, in fact, exist outside of the concept of what a persyn must be.

Persynhood
is a constant struggle to live and work together.

We are all people.
Regardless of any persyns’ opinion.

And when you objectify, catcall, harass, or abuse some one
because of an exclusive definition of a persyn,
and because of binary distinctions between a man and woman.
you are humiliating and degrading people.
That group that we all belong to.
One of your own.

And perhaps distinguishing what a persyn is,
is important.
A persyn is not a chair,
it is not a tree,
it is not just any living thing which breathes, and has hair, and gives live birth
– that’s a mammal.

Those distinctions are somewhat important.
But even still,
Even among the species and the objects,
one could argue that all deserve respect.

And just because we are powerful
does not mean we should be cruel.

There’s a buzzword again – should.
That morality.
That socially informed sense of right and wrong.
That judgement I have no shame in passing
because it means that I am learning and reevaluating
with every new gain in information.

We must rethink our perspectives and behaviors with every new gain.
Not scoff in the faces of truths and experiences,
because they are hard to stomach.
Not neglect the persyns that live and exist in front of them,
because they are hard to accept.
Just because the experiences are not theirs.

These experiences and these persyns are ours,
as a people.
Every one’s flaws, and secrets, and troubles,
belong to us
as a people.
We can choose to heal or hide from them.

But either way,
in the long run,
inevitably
they will surface
and become impossible to ignore.

And a point will come when we must confront our faults.
And we will choose to love or hate.
And we may thrive for our cause
and we may suffer for its waves.

It’s up to you
to all of us,
to always arm ourselves with new information.
For when there are no more walls of ignorance to hide behind
and this fight and this war finally confronts you, a singular persyn,
you will have to choose your side.
To love or to hate
to support or to abuse
to listen and respond or to continue to neglect.

Yes, I believe in morality.
Because it is informed,
it gives me a choice.

It means that I am learning.
And I want you to grow, too.

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About Jessica Lee

Jessica is a twenty-something poet who performs most of her work on stage in Spoken Word. She has found writing therapeutic since she was child, and has pursued it ceaselessly. She enjoys writing even the most fleeting thoughts and dreams as SensicalRavings. Between long retail shifts, she enjoys writing observational pieces (always with a slant) of locally relevant subjects as ALLGainesville. If you appreciate inspiring, coming-of-age suppositions, become a follower. Though it's not always roses, it's raw!

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