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Gregory Muller's Autobiography (submitted 5/4/06)
I was born on the meridian of mediocrity,
The cusp of despair, and the moon
Of a full indifference.
It was a brittle life for me
All sand and not enough soil.
But I was a spiny succulent
And I survived despite
The searing heat of summer
And the bitter cold of the desert
Night. I survived on
The memories of a
Devotion almost forgotten.
My spikes made me hold everyone at bay;
I had only fantasies of a kiss or a gentle hand.
The texture of my life grew threadbare
Like my fathers tweed jacket.
How odd to see a cactus in a coat.
He died, you know.
He was born on the median of monotony,
The cusp of apathy, and the Moon
Of the Broken Heart.
He was a succulent too, with too much
Work and too little fun. His life was barren
And he showed me how to be barren too.
But I had a ray of hope and I
Nurtured it with the help of friends,
And gradually my spines began to disappear.
With time, I sprouted a human heart
And after many clumsy interactions
I became a human being.
All at once I became aware
Of my own mortality. What a beautiful
But finite gift I had. Suddenly
I realized that life was not so much
Reaching for future possibilities as
It was turning my back to darkness and death
And living in the here and now.
Once I heard, now I can listen
Where I had eyesight, now I have vision.
Where I had touch, now I have feelings.
Smell gave me scents, now it brings emotion.
Where I tasted bitterness, now I can taste the sweet
Smooth honey of life itself.