Baby Elephant, Walk!

When we are young, they begin to fit and clothe us in raiments for battle: the helmet of self-esteem; the breastplate of self-confidence; the shield of self-assurance; the sword of self-righteousness – before we understand the “self”, when what self we possess, if any at all, is like a baby elephant whose trainers fit its infant leg with a band of iron fixed to a chain and slender stake too strong for a young beast to pull from the ground.

As we grow old and that first armor rusts they clothe us in uniforms for endless toil: the cap of self-doubt; the coat of self-interest; the boots of self-loathing; the jewels of self-pity – and although our self has outgrown its plate and mail cage, like the elephant, tethered from childhood by that same narrow band and slender stake, who at their full grown prime could with a simple, small gesture easily pull their leg free from any bond, we quietly wait, and do the master’s bidding, not believing, not imagining, not even trying to escape.

09 JAN 2017

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