Looking Basic

I was called basic recently. I’m pretty sure my response wasn’t what they expected. For those of you who might be around my age (without the benefit of sons “in the know”), the definition of basic is: (slang) characterizes someone or something as unoriginal, unexceptional, and mainstream. My response was a smile and a laugh. This was followed by a “thank-you”. They were trying hard to insult me. But I’m okay with being mainstream. I don’t seek the spotlight so being average or unexceptional isn’t always a bad thing. As far as being “unoriginal” they have no clue. They don’t even know I have a blog let alone that I write poetry. In fact, they don’t know me at all. Sure I dress pretty normally (and yes I wear a lot of LuLaRoe® so I guess that IS pretty basic). The only really out of the ordinary thing I wear are my hats. Sometimes the universe provides poetry fodder…

I own it, I’m basic
You criticize what I wear
You don’t like my hair
Tell me I’m just thick
I own it, I’m basic

Always ready to compare
Shout that I’ve a fat derriere
Try to make me go ballistic
I own it, I’m basic

Call me names and swear
Hope to drive me to despair
Exclude me from your clique
I own it, I’m basic

Tell me I’d best beware
Hurl threats and fiery glare
But I’m wise to your schtick
I own it, I’m basic

I bat down insults midair
I’m not an easy one to scare
I’m an anti bully Bolshevik
I own it, I’m basic

I’m middle of the road aware
And it’s true I don’t care
I’m just an average chick
I own it, I’m basic

The above poem is a Dansa. It is a stanzic rhyming form with a refrain. The first stanza is 5 lines with the 1st line and the last line being identical. The last line becomes the refrain and is repeated as the last line in all subsequent stanzas. The rhyming is limited to 2 rhymes for the entire poem. The rhyme scheme is as follows: A/b/b/a/A, b/b/a/A, b/b/a/A, etc. There is no maximum number of stanzas but there must be at least 2.

70 thoughts on “Looking Basic

  1. unoriginal, unexceptional, and mainstream. My response was a smile and a laugh. This was followed by a “thank-you”. They were trying hard to insult me.

    Why was somebody being a jerk to you? You’re one of the nicest people ever, Muri ❤

    Liked by 2 people

    1. Thanks David! But there are mean people all over the place. Right now in my little corner the polarization along political lines has brought out the meanness in far too many. Wearing a mask makes me a target. But I refuse to stoop to that level. If I don’t take offense then it takes all the wind out of their sails…

      Liked by 4 people

    1. Kerfe I adore your collages! If anyone finds them boring then that is a reflection on their lack of imagination!! It is often the case that beneath the ordinary exteriors are extraordinary lives…

      Liked by 3 people

      1. It’s me they think of as boring. When they see my collages they are surprised I could create things so strange. But you are right, we really know so little about anyone else’s inner life, we should try our best not to pigeonhole them.

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    1. Aw thanks bunches Di! I think everyone has some type of talent and there are lots of different gifts – I try to use mine as best I can. Of course WP is full of talented people – and I’ve found so many!

      Liked by 1 person

  2. Oh dear who on earth would have the audacity to even say that…ahh i guess some people are really born mean..or i am reminded of what Paolo Coelho said ” Haters don’t really hate you. They hate themselves, because you’re a reflection of what they wish to be”… i had my share of almost the same experience. I was recently told of a remark about myself by someone and it goes like this “oh, she doesn’t even have the face value”…and i just couldn’t contain my laughter…i laughed so hard….twas really funny for someone (educated at that) to give such a nonsense remark…

    Liked by 1 person

    1. Hehe! Other’s opinion of me is their problem – not mine. I’ve taken to humming Taylor Swift’s hit “shake it off” where she sings “…And the haters gonna hate, hate, hate, hate, hate/Baby, I’m just gonna shake, shake, shake, shake, shake/I shake it off, I shake it off” It really is kind of funny and also not a reflection on me but a reflection on them.

      Liked by 2 people

  3. Neat to catch up on your recent posts AND poetry, which is always good. (Net has been down. Fixed; yay!)
    Sometimes, it feels like a social studies class, here, in seeing how people react to you, in life, and here. 😉
    Love our lives!!!

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    1. I saw that you were having connectivity issues (FB is sometimes helpful). Glad you are back on WP and able to read all the shenanigans going on! I’ve had lots of experience with bullies and know how to handle them…

      Liked by 1 person

  4. I liked this form, Muri. To my ear, it sounded a bit rappish. Not basic at all. And what good are blingy accessories without a basic wardrobe to undergird them? Decades ago, coworkers would regale me with tales of their wild and crazy adventures, which usually ended badly. They thought I was boring or banal (or basic, had that word been in vogue back then) but I was fine with that. My mantra was “I love my boring life.” One man’s boredom is another man’s serenity.

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  5. Love that poem! Glad for an explanation of basic, I fit that bill. 🙂 Why do people have to categorize someone they don’t even know? such is life I guess.

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    1. Bonnie I’m thrilled you liked the poem! Everyone has opinions and in the politicized pandemic climate they all feel entitled to give voice to them… Thus being called basic and earlier called a Karen! The funny thing is they were all strangers to me so their opinions were worth zilch and there was no sting to their words!!! And my response took them off their high horses… Yes, that is life!

      Liked by 1 person

  6. Oh, I am “basic,” with a twist of geeky nerdism. I have learned to embrace my persona and not care what other people think – what I wear, how I look, the life I live, or the weird humor. As Popeye says, “I am what I am!”

    I love your poem and the fact that you try different types of poetry. I have been stuck on sonnets because I enjoy them and they make my creative mind work a little harder, but it may be time to expand the horizon a bit.

    Liked by 1 person

    1. I’m ecstatic that you have embraced who you are! If only everyone was able to find that love of self! We are the lucky ones! Too often it comes too late in life…
      Sonnets are a delight to read and to write. But I think variety is the spice of life so I mix it up! I hope you can fall in love with some of the other forms!! Perhaps a haiku sonnet? To ease into it? 🙂

      Liked by 1 person

    1. I generally ignore the mean people as they don’t add value to my life. Still sometime you have to speak up (and create a blog post). Hehe! I think your usage is spot on. (and I’m very gratified to hear that my poem is lit!!)

      Liked by 2 people

  7. Whoever it was who said that to you, he/she does not see beyond the externals. I guess they’ve been conditioned to being with those who show who they really are inside, on the outside; no need to delve further to get to know the real person.

    Then again, I have a feeling that fewer and fewer people these days really care about being a good mum and wife, doing home cooking, keeping a clean home, working hard and doing well in a job, having fun and quiet hobbies, reaching out and helping others to get to their feet each time they fall and hurt themselves. So even if they did try to get to know you, unless they hold to similar values, you (and I, for sure) would still come across as…. basic.

    So be it.

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    1. I hear you! We have become a very superficial society where people are judged by their covers and not the content of their hearts. It is about what you have/own instead of what kindnesses you bring into the world. I’m basic. I’ve got no problem with that!! ❤

      Liked by 1 person

  8. I really like this poem. “Chasing the clout” is another one I wasn’t aware of for a long time either. BTW, how did you get your blog posts to be single spaced? Thanks! Hope you have a good day.

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    1. I’m tickled you like this one! I use the Classic editor but when I was fumbling around with the Block editor I got this tip from a friend – hitting Shift+Enter gives you the next line without creating a new block… Other than that you need to be able to type in code (
      starts a paragraph and ends a paragraph)…

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  9. OK, Muri, I hadn’t written a poem in months, maybe a year, but I jotted down the rules for a Dansa and waited to see if the muses would do their thing. I woke up this morning thinking about family Zooms. My mother and one of my sisters live just 30 minutes east of here, but whenever the weather (or anything else) is different here than it is there, they chalk it off to my proximity to Lake Erie. This happens so often it has become a running joke. Here’s the poem:

    LAKE EFFECT

    It’s always because we’re near the lake
    A silly phrase folks use to explain
    Why they got snow and I got rain
    We’re minutes apart, for heaven’s sake
    But it’s always because we’re near the lake

    Differing spins on our weather vanes
    Earlier harvests of produce and grains
    Their steadfast conviction is hard to shake
    It’s always because we’re near the lake

    If water goes slower down the drain
    Or whistles sound louder on the train
    Or muffins take five minutes longer to bake
    It’s always because we’re near the lake

    Liked by 1 person

    1. WOW! I love this one!! The Lake Effect is a real thing – and this poem is just outstanding! I worked at a clinic in Michigan City but was living in Mishawaka – there were times when I had to call off because we had 3 feet of snow and they had declared a snow emergency but the clinic had just a dusting!!!

      Liked by 1 person

      1. That, I can believe. But when I said our power was out 12 hrs because high winds had toppled a pole, they said, “Yeah, it’s always windier up by the lake.” When my car wouldn’t start, they said, “The moist air up by the lake kills batteries.” When my zucchini plants didn’t take, they said, “That’s probably because the soil is so sandy up by the lake.” When I couldn’t hang my laundry out during mufflehead season, they said, “Being so far from the lake, we never have that problem.” LOL.

        Liked by 1 person

    1. Thanks Elizabeth. There are just so many people looking for a fight and when you don’t paly into their game they are dumbfounded. It always helps to disarm the unhappy with a smile and words of thanks…

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