Poem: War is Over by Jennifer Lee Lawson

I am writing a new collection of poems. I wanted to try something new. Usually, when I write a poem, it’s meant to be either read or spoken. Rarely both. Often, I put poems out in the world free of charge. However, what’s the use of a free poem if it’s not as accessible as I can make it? Therefore, I’m putting this specific poem out in the world both spoken and written.

This collection of poems marks a commitment to the practice of Revolutionary Love. I know it’s going to be a challenge to practice it the best I can. However, I believe this commitment is important. So, I am making my little space in the world the most equitable and just place I can make it.

War is Over

We had quite a time.

It was eventful.

I learned a lot.

//We had a war.//

You may have won the combat

But I was on the side of right.

We both know that now.

It’s over

And all I want

Is to be friends now.

Let’s meet each other where we are.

See where our conversations go.

I’ll be your steadfast spinster.

/Always a bridesmaid and never a bride./

You shall be the opposite.

I may never be a crazy cat lady

But, trust me, crazy I can be.

I know now that you are sane.

I forgive you for what you did.

You are very skilled.

I have a way with words.

Together, we will be everything.

Revolutionary Love by Ani Difranco

When Ani Difranco’s new album came out, I wasn’t ready to listen to it. This morning, I woke up at 5 am and decided it was my time to give it a listen. So, I did. I find this to be Difranco’s most mature work. It is jazzy and bluesy and somber and reflective. It’s definitely got a place in my heart.

This album is named after Valerie Kaur’s book on the topic of revolutionary love. Recently, someone read my short book on Native American justice and said it reminded them of Kaur’s book. I was honored.

What Would the World Be Like if Neurodiverse People Ruled the World?

I have delt with schizophrenia and OCD for over a decade. In recent years, I have worked very hard to, well, conform. Granted, having episodes of psychosis and severe OCD episodes makes my life less happy. That’s why I work on it daily. However, I’m coming to the conclusion that no matter how hard I work at it, I will always be a little different. I have come to a way of life that minimizes my symptoms, but that means I cannot do things that other people can do, like work a regular job, tolerate abuse and stress, and, well, the typical things normies do.

So, I wondered: What would it be like if, instead of me trying to conform to that way of life, other people had to live the way I do? What would it be like if I had power and made the norms?

First of all, I would mandate less work. I fully believe we need more time to reflect on our behaviors and process things. This is essential to becoming a flourishing human being. Processing things takes time. Few people are able to live moment to moment and make good choices each time. We need time to breathe, relax and reflect. That means less work.

Secondly, conflict management would be prime. Conflict causes stress most times and stress is not good for mental health. When it comes to global disputes, innovate and unique forms of conflict resolution would be encouraged. Thus, the world would be more peaceful and reasonable.

Third, there would be less dating sites and more platonic friendship sites. Friendships are key to a happy life. Having good platonic friendship sites would encourage people to explore their unique interests, like art therapy, with likeminded people.

Fourth, everyone would have had healthcare a long, long time ago. Taking medications, going to counseling, costs money. Not everyone has that luxury.

Lastly, internet would be a public good. It’s essential to network with people with similar illnesses and research health topics. Therefore, everyone would have internet.

These are just a few ways you would have to adapt if I were in charge. These are things that work for me. Maybe, just maybe, you’ll like what you read.

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