I have not always been interested in my fellow man. I was extremely self-centered for a great number of years. Much of this had to do with being constantly drunk or high. My perspective did not begin to change until I stopped drinking and using drugs. As a result of quitting, a whole new world opened up. One in which I could put others first for a change. I was able to care for my neighbor. I was finally capable of seeing things from the vantage point of another human being. I started to see how my situation had little if nothing to do with other people. I could stop blaming others. I could start to take responsibility for my own actions. I could see how it was that I was supposed to do whatever I could to move things in the right direction. How I was supposed to at least try.

The following poem came to me earlier this year as I sat contemplating where I’ve been and how far I’ve come.

As you can,
You must do what you will;
To the extent you cannot,
You must then instill the idea to
Either lead or follow;
Impart or borrow.
But never can you,
Nor should you,
Simply stand around and wallow
In the sin of indecision,
Wishing for someone, anyone,
To take that hill.
You must always at least do
What you can.

© 2014 Steven Barto

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