Two Levels by Pamela Schloesser Canepa (c) 2021
There are two levels of me in everything–
the scared, unsure child and the reasonable adult
comforting her or calming her, reminding of what’s
real and what is a reflection of an anxious mind.
But which is the one that takes off on a flight of fancy?
Which is the one that laughs at an uncomfortable moment,
breaking the tension with a goofy smile?
Which is the intellectual and which is the buffoon?
Ah, but aren’t they one and the same when
I can open up and just laugh at myself?
You see. These two threads are intertwined.
I should deny neither one. I have earned that prize,
my prize for repressing the youthful spirit
when I still had my youth, a consolation prize,
for I had to be good girl, big sister, had to be the wife, and then the mom
restrained by fear or worry or someone else’s view of me.
I had to be what society wanted to see…
and was so afraid to step out of those lines.
I have owed it to myself, I should have claimed it then
But finally now I see it’s my right,
To comfortably own all sides of myself.