"Solution Not Reward"


by Jeph Johnson


is not


one earns

in fact

the more

someone isn't

earning your respect

the more


needs be applied


Author's Notes/Comments: 


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Reasons Are Reasonable (to Me)

by Jeph Johnson


Call it a pet peeve or even a quirky character flaw, but if I am hurt by someone, an apology is NOT the first thing I look for. In fact, sometimes if a good enough explanation is presented to me, no apology is even necessary.


I want a reason.


I want them to defend their action.


I don't see reasons (often referred to as "excuses") in a negative light. I see reasons as necessary components for producing a more heartfelt remorse in those who've hurt me, and in me, a more valid sense of forgiveness.


For me, knowing motives and reasons behind one's actions makes things feel not so hurtful. Reasons become comforting words of reassurance that people are not just being evil assholes or bullies. Understanding a person's reasons behind their actions confirms to me that the hurtful act was not some sort of vengeance or retaliation against a perceived fault of my own.


Unfortunately, this is not the case with most everyone else I have encountered. I have found others feel relief (and presumably forgiveness) immediately after an apology is given.


No excuses.


No explanations.


No alternative stories.


And especially no denials.


Apparently ownership of one's misdeed is what counts and a person's intent behind their actions or mistake is valued only as a nice curiosity or afterthought.


Often I have attempted to convey the rationale behind a questionable action I have done that may have produced unintended results. It has been done with a sincere motive to help ease hurt, only to have the exact opposite thing happen. Instead I am thought of as less sympathetic and less thoughtful and I seem to hurt them more.


For some unknown reason, defending one's questionable actions sounds unapologetic, even when an apology is given!


"I am sorry I splashed water on you."


...apparently holds more clout than:


"I was rushing my wife to the hospital with a brain hemorrhage and hydroplaned across the puddle and must have splashed you. I am so sorry. Are you okay?"


When someone hurts another, I realize, regardless of what one person felt really happened, the hurt person making the claim (hereby referred to as the "victim") believes their version of an event is true for them. Each person's reality is formed for each individual participant in any activity or event.


But shouldn't the victim have their mind open to healing just as much as the alleged perpetrator has their mind open to understanding the victim's feelings? This sort of understanding can only come about through communication. And communication is displayed by conveying reasons as well as understanding feelings.


I absolutely hate when someone feels you have hurt them, that the "proper" course of action is to offer up an apology and refrain from explaining yourself, providing excuses or giving justification.


I often hear people say in a condescending tone:


"You're just trying to justify it!"


Well yeah, of course I am. If it wasn't justifiable I would do what everybody else does and offer up my apologies without an excuse!


I guess what I don't understand is why providing justification for your actions somehow discredits your apology?


Is it "only when asked" that our excuses are valid?


I must keep reminding myself that a blanket apology without giving a reason is not an admission of guilt, even if, to me, it sounds just like that.

Author's Notes/Comments: 


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Words Are Shadows

Words Are Shadows


I climbed atop a mountain,
I wish that you were there.
A shadow of the thing itself,
Is all I have to share.


My words are only shadows,
They're shadows of a time.
They're shadows not the thing itself,
That mountain you must climb.


- ThemanwithNoHead

Author's Notes/Comments: 

On the primacy of experience.








Is something that can be


Considered as rude,


Or others can simply


Adhere to a given status quo.




Whatever route chosen,


The result is 


Usually positive when


There is intelligence


Capabilities on both sides of the fence and 


Mature communication.






What to say everyday to the ones you love, co-workers and just people you greet on the street. Sometimes people start their days and it just comes natural, and more often then you think others have no clue how to even say "Good morning". Can you imagine being a child at a breakfast table and no one around you even speaks to each other? Mom and dad are at each others throats and brother and sister are arguing? Communicating is not some new age art form, this is historical. We see the President, current and many in our past doing it although most of the time we want them to stop because they make no sense or are only speaking of nonsense, they are communicating to us. Teachers do it when teaching lessons, news reporters who bring you the five o'clock news are communicating mostly bad news to the world but heck it's communication.

If we all see it daily all around us from billboards and highway signs why is it one of the most complicated things for us all to do in our everyday lives.

 Just for one moment think of this senerio " You wake up in the morning you get out of bed, shower and head to work, you pass a co-worker at the door and you say "Nothing". That coworker just said to him/her self "wow what a snob"! You had no bad intentions or even a thought about that person you passed you were just consumed with thoughts of the busy day you had ahead of you. You communicated to the person you passed using your body language and your ignorance to their exsistance.


Now imagine what you communicate with just a simple "Hello" and throw in a smile you really communicate something to the person you just walked by. Communication isn't just words, it's body language, tone of our voices, expressions on our faces.


Think of what you want to communicate to someone as you pass them by tomorrow. What do you want to show people of yourself?


Trisha LoGrasso



Author's Notes/Comments: 

This is just one of many stories on communication


Trisha LoGrasso

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I think I don't know

Communication should be easier,

yet is seems so much more difficult. I know

what I want to say…I think.

I talk to everyone else about what I think I desire for our future.

When I see you, I don’t speak my mind at all. It seems

like things change. Prehaps

I don’t know what I want, or is what I want constantly changing?

I presume I should be more self-aware.

How are you supposed to know what I want? I don’t think I know

what it is that I want.


You leave soon…maybe…

Leaving would make things easier. It would no longer matter

what I wanted if you had to leave. Is that what I am

waiting for? I know you are going to leave.

Could I handle your departure?

It seems like I see you all the time now.

But I noticed the puny five days that you had vanished. Not really

vanished I guess. I saw you -ish, I talked to you -ish,

and I was hurt –ish.

I don’t think you knew you were gone.


I am constantly realizing how much weaker I am

than I had originally thought. It becomes

so much more obvious to me when you are around; I cower down.

Even if I don’t know what I want, doesn’t it help

to talk? Hash it out.

I think I’m afraid of what you might say…terrified

of what you won’t say.


You know what I’m talking about. I can see,

you just as scared as me.

wondering what we might be… or not.

You apologize like you know there needs to be a change. It seems to help

mask whatever problems we have.

Will this bandage last? Probably not.

I don’t think we can’t expect gauze to heal a wound

that needs stitches.


It seems so obvious that we need to converse

about something other than TV shows and poker.

But we don’t really talk. We don’t know

one another. We got naked often,

for a few minutes, then no more. Why do I seem so

hell bent on sewing this up? It wasn’t a masterpiece

at any point. But it was something different

for me. I think like the feeling

of being wanted, but is it more than that?


I am beginning to realize

that what I want matters. I still

don’t know what I want. But we do need to talk. For sure

you see this. Your actions show that to me.

But we don’t talk. Probably won’t talk. Unless

one of us starts the conversation. I don’t

know how to start. You

ask me questions, but never seem to have a reply

for my answers…when I answer.

I don’t think this will work, because it makes no sense.

But knowing you are escaping soon

might be what is holding my knowledge back.

I don’t think this will go anywhere.

But, “we need to talk.”


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              Edward Iacona


There are many magic words

When we have the predilection

For expressing our deepest thoughts

To the object of our affection.


Don’t worry if you’re word impaired

Cause it isn’t very hard

To borrow the words of poets

Including Avon’s bard.


If that is not your style

One really can’t go wrong

With the music and lyrics

Of a well selected song.


And, within our wireless age

There’s no need to be perplexed

Consider the joys of Voicemail

Or, if you must, just text. 


You can say them or sing them

Shout out loud or mutter them.

If emotions overcome you

One may have to stutter them.


When it comes to magic words

There is no one way to utter them

No matter which way you choose

You should not ever shutter them. 


Then there will be other times

When mutual impulses call

And magic words may be spoken

But are not needed at all. 


Author's Notes/Comments: 



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Humanities shell

all of you have always seemed hollow to me...

I can't feel your forced company.. just a shell with no meaning..

why do you people keep breeding..?

absent of harmony, it's all been chased away by fear..

rejecting the light, crawling into loneliness, you can only pretend for so long..

bouncing off the walls our past memories, never are they comforting..


society will try to saw off your wings..

they'll rob you of your money so you can't afford the pretty things..

false attachments out of feeling, co-dependance keeps on feeding on our heart's gentle beating..


mis-communication all the time, where on earth is everyone's mind..?

creativity locked up and self expression is confined..

why do they continue to try & waste my time... because they've been wasting their own..?

don't let them leave you hollow, or you'll find yourself without a core, before the end of tomorrow..

you'll be living off their systematic LIES.

you will no longer see yourself when you gaze into the reflection of your own eyes... 

Author's Notes/Comments: 

Sep. 2012~

Stone Gutter

Muttered words in gutters of stone,
passed along the incline down streams
of melted snow.
With every split across the hardened pipe,
somebody will paraphrase and fail
to communicate.
And as the wind licks at the pavement,
and the skies yield to none;
the words find the sewers.

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