This morning I walked on a trail,
One converted from train tracks
To a peaceful land far from worries,
All of the things so annoying of late.

The wind blew with wintery jabs.
The sun set a teasing angle that was
At times blocked by cliffs carved into the land to make the trail,
Further screened by trees, and then
Shining just enough
To make the cold not turn to freezing.

I was there with my dog, prancing,
My son, waxing of a mid-twenties life, and
Me wondering about nothing,
Thinking of the day’s beauty,
Accepting of the chill.

Things changed on our return,
My son went his way.
Einstein and I ours.
Upon getting home I made an error,
I checked my email,
To find that a family member, in his good conscious, had reached out.

I wish he had not.
I have no time for being preached to,
Right, Left, or religious.
I know what I believe, I know how to think for myself,
I know I don’t have the will or soul
To sell myself out or to ask others to do so for my beliefs.

Gun toting advocacy beyond the Constitution is out of bounds for me.
Don’t ask me to join your alphabet organization.
Polarizing social proclamations have no places within my circles of influence.
Don’t tell me how people are, I’ll make my own judgments, thank you.
Inspiration from above is not about an edited book,
It’s about action. Let me find faith from all as I seek to act in a way best for all.

I suppose that means that you can take me off your email list,
I can’t be converted, politicized, and I’ll take marginalization, even loneliness
Rather than sacrifice my ethos.
Let me read from your Book and find my meaning. Will you read from mine?
Let me decide whether to own a gun or not. I won’t tell you not to.
Let me go to work and not have to talk about it at family gatherings. Please…

I’m asking for a trigger warning,
The kind that comes when you cannot contain yourself,
So that I get the message that you are about to pontificate,
Just a gesture, a waving of your hand that signals I should leave
Lest I be caught in a mess of ideology and fallacy that I would rather avoid.
Then I would know that you respect what I am, who I am, and who you are.

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