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How Are You? - Brief Responses.

Posted by Bill


What do you say? What do you do?
When someone questions “How are you?”
Do you tell the truth or lie?
Or do you simply ask them “Why?”

When people ask you how you are.
They push the verbal door ajar.
But most will not invite you in.
So explanations can’t begin.

I feel this question, when it’s said.
Is meaning something else instead.
It doesn’t mean they want to know.
Or want to see your feelings show.

If you have troubles or you’re vexed.
What reply would be your next?
Would your response fill a foolscap?
Or would you state that you feel crap?

If your life’s so miserable.
You’d like to be invisible.
Do you shrug and say “So- so!”
Or tell them “You don’t want to know!”

Would you say “It’s a long story.”
Or perhaps “It’s far too gory.”
Would you rake through all the muck.
Or simply say your life is ‘Yuck’.

I don’t want to burden folk.
So I might smile or tell a joke.
But illnesses I will sideline.
And retort that - ”I’m just fine!”

I like my answers short and sweet.
So’ try to keep them all upbeat.
Then when answering I’ll say.
“I think on balance I’m – okay!”

B. Withers 2012

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Oct 10, 2012
Simiberry : Hello Bill. I have to say that this was marvelously done. I can definitely understand It's far to gory as a reply. That's usually the one on my mind but I tend not to say. When I go into detail I'm usually told to keep the gore down. It's not gory to me anymore, but I realize explaining the ins and outs of many of the things I go through are gory to most normal people. I thought this poem was really, really great. I think it speaks for all of us here on ostomates. Like you said before, people who are willing to listen to a full explanation of your health are far and in between. Keep on writing, Simi
Oct 10, 2012
Simiberry : Oh, and please forgive any typos... sometimes I don't catch them in time, especially when I type too fast.
Oct 10, 2012
mooza : lol same here my brain and typing are very well known ..Nice one bill like that :)
Oct 10, 2012
Mrs.A : True words, most say it out of politeness I guess. So I think the quick response is in order. Sometimes when people say good morning I reply with a question, is it?..or a simple response of mornin'
Oct 11, 2012
Bill : Hello everybody.Thank you all for your comments which are much appreciated.Simi: On a system that does not appear to have a spell-checker, spelling and typing errors are bound to occur. I quite like them as they sometimes alter the context of the correspondence dramatically or humorously. They can also throw up some unintended concepts that stimulate me to versification.Mooza: Your posts are great as they clearly express the way you feel in ways that nobody else uses. Some of the most effective poetry is written in this colloquial and personal way. I have often wished that I could emulate this style but when I have tried, it simply doesn't come out in that free-flowing style that you manage to capture in your posts. Keep posting!!Mrs A: You are right about the Good morning greeting and responses This might be an appropriate concept for yet another verse or two.I believe the greeting of Good-morning is simply an abbreviation for I wish you a good morning - If so, then an appropriate response would be Thank you! and I wish you a good morning too.One of my friends starts his conversations with Greetings! - which sounds a bit odd at first but it does avoid implying any positive or negative about the day. Perhaps we should start a thread and collect all these brief greetings and responses. I'm sure there must be some humorous ones as well as those used on a daily basis. Best wishes Bill
Oct 11, 2012
Bill : I have just noticed that this format does not reproduce inverted commas, so please feel free to add them where you think they might be appropriate.Chuckle! - chuckle! Bill
Oct 11, 2012
mooza : Hey Bill thanks but unfortunatley my spelling mistakes and crazy chit chats are really real LOL .But on this convo -topic , honestly mrs. a the days of me working and being on big doses for long periods of prendisone , yeah that nast crapola , i would of double dares any one to say good morning sumtimes i even scared my self how nasty i was on those meds even my boss would say g.moroning how r u and keep walking , OMG he should be happy he made it that far LOL coz he did cop a lot from me ... x x nice yes scary Hell yeah :) XX
Oct 11, 2012
mooza : , !@#$%^_)( there ya go my pronuciations things
Oct 26, 2012
Sophie96 : Hi Bill, love the poem. It captions it very well, people were aways asking how i was when i came out of hospital and i never wanted to go in to detail because like you say, its too gory! Especially for the people that havent been there while your going through it all! But when i just said im ok, i always imagine they are thinking what was i even doing in hospital because they cant see the reason i was there! Slightly related, i hated it when a couple of people (who didnt know about the ileostomy) looked at me and said 'its so good to see you out and about' or something similar. Just because youve been in hospital for a couple of months, doesnt mean you want to stay indoors forever! Ha ha. Sophie x
Nov 23, 2012
theluckyfrog : Your poems amuse me so much, Bill. I identify with this one in particular because lately I kind of resent saying I'm fine when I just had my freaking colon removed, and even though I've accepted this development it's not exactly what I consider fine. I've had to redefine the word in my head, because when people ask me if I'm doing fine they're really asking if they need to do anything for me, and the answer is no. If they're strangers and they ask me how I'm doing, they'll be taken aback if I say, Well, pooping through my stomach isn't my idea of a good time so not too well at the moment. So if you say fine enough, do you believe it?
Nov 23, 2012
theluckyfrog : I've started answering my doctor's inquiries with As well as can be expected. He doesn't seem to know how to respond to that one.
Nov 24, 2012
Bill : Hello theluckyfrog. Thank you so much for your feedback on the verses. There are so many things that I cross my mind when people ask me this sort of question but I try to keep the more negative ones to myself. In the main I see most of these questions as people's attempts at trying to make conversation - a bit like talking about the weather. (a British thing!)Best wishes Bill

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