“Feeding Ourselves To The Wolves
Maria R. Palacios
They say we don’t have to
disclose our disabilities,
but we are constantly
having to do so.
We do not owe you
the skin and bones of our disabled story.
we give it to you
over and over
because not doing so
will make us even more
You want to know
how we cope, how we live
in our disabled bodies…
intimate shit like
how we wipe our asses when we have short arms,
or how we have sex when we have no limbs
how we pee if we’re paralyzed,
or if being blind is as dark as it sounds
or if being disabled means always being jealous
of nondisabled people
because you believe
that somehow becoming disabled would be
the end of the world…the end
of your world.
You admire the disabled because
ignorance, fear and pity look better dressed up
It becomes easier to say “You’re so inspiring”
“Cripples are interesting to watch.” Or
“Glad to see people like you out and about”
“I’m so glad I’m not disabled”
“If I were disabled,
I would just want to kill myself.”
And society has no problem
wanting to kill the disabled.
They kill us in movies and in real life.
in movies they paint us as bitter, pitiful
characters who cannot conceive the thought
of being able to live a fulfilling life
in a disabled body
would love you any more
or want you any more,
and because unless you can walk and talk,
and do everything in the conventional
life is not worth shit.
And that is
the bullshit portrayal of most disabled lives
in the movies.
Then, in real life,
society secretly wishes for a “cripmageddon”
which is a wish for a crip-free world.
They want to heal us
or make us disappear.
I really do believe
there is a deeply rooted, fear based,
wish for a world free of disabled people.
They want to kill us and they do so slowly,
by eliminating funds and killing programs
that give us a chance to live
close to those in the community
than an institution
or some shit-hole assisted living place
that houses the throwaways
of society…the ones
labeled too broken for anything…
too broken to work…
too broken to consider
a human resource…
a life worth saving.
I think that’s one reason why
we, as disabled people
agree to feed you the skin and bones
of our disabled story
because you seem so unable to see
that a real person exists
in each of us.
We feel forced to disclose
the intimate details of our disabled lives…
let you satisfy
the hungry wolves of your curiosity
just so you can digest
of our truths.