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By Aspen Crick May 20, 2021

Self-Appointed

Everyone deserves someone

Who cares about them

And I’ve appointed myself

To this position

Almost regrettably

 

Tell me what you need

And you shall receive

This stance isn’t political

It is of a higher importance

Than my own mind and body

It is probably unhealthy

I know it is

 

I love you

As I love most others

I must restrain myself from loving

The vile sinners

Because I only have so much to give

And this act is starting to wear me thin

I pray that I can redeem myself

 

Even when I cannot help myself

I do my best to help everyone

But usually fall short

And start to doubt whether I’m too human

Too vulnerable

For this self-appointed position

 

Collage by author.

About the author

Aspen Crick is 17 and a first-year Liberal Arts student. She was always a fan of poetry but only got truly into it when the pandemic hit as a way to escape, as some people do when reading books. Apart from writing poetry she enjoys creating visual art, dancing and baking.

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    mai thi

    September 7, 2021

    The poem conveys the pain of taking care of others even at the expense of oneself. The first four lines stand in almost a contradiction with what follows. “Everyone deserves someone who cares about them and I’ve appointed myself to this position” had me hinted at a poem about self love and taking care of yourself. The last line however, “Almost regrettably”, hits differently. When your well-being concerns no one else but you, it hurts. Perhaps being the one who cares about oneself is taken as loneliness: that in the vast seven-billion sea of people, there’s not a soul to count on; that in a tsunami of hardship, you yourself are all that come to help…
    But despite all this, stay strong! I believe love will come to you.

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    Pera

    September 8, 2021

    This makes me think of the view of selflessness as a virtue in our society when it can be a very unhealthy trait. I think we are entering an age where we see that you should put yourself first, because it can be very self-destructive to care for others at your own expense.
    Many lines in this poem make me think it is alluding to an imbalance in a relationship, where one person is taking advantage of the other’s kindness and vulnerability, or otherwise not giving as much as they take.
    However, it also refers to an “act” wherein the speaker is trying to extend their love to many people:
    “I love you/As I love most others/I must restrain myself from loving/The vile sinners/Because I only have so much to give/And this act is starting to wear me thin”

    To me, this means it is not real love, as evidenced by it being referred to as an act, and the fact there is no reciprocation. It is also impersonal, since it’s how they “love most others”. “The vile sinners” could be people that treat the speaker badly in the ways mentioned above, by taking advantage of them.

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    cj.shep

    September 8, 2021

    Just looking at the cover image, I knew this piece would be relatable. And it was. Wanting to help others without burning yourself out is a profoundly intricate dance. Your limit as to how much you can give varies, depending on the day, your mood or even the weather. As a people pleaser myself, I know the feeling. Without doing the work of setting boundaries with friends and family members, it becomes a never-ending cycle of mixed feelings. Though it’s rarely the desired outcome, resentment, and bitterness towards these people you love is far too common. “I do my best to help everyone/But usually fall short/And start to doubt whether I’m too human.” These lines were gut wrenching. Personally, the need to always go out of my way for others also affects my mental health and self-esteem. Because who am I to say no to loved ones? The way you captured this feeling of helplessness, frustration, and need for approval is magnificent.

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    cless

    September 8, 2021

    The poem Self-appointed by Aspen was surprisingly relatable. While reading it, over and over I could see myself in the words. I think to me, the first stanza was so perfectly said and perfectly explains the dilemma that goes with it. This idea of being able to rely on others when you need to is strongly represented in media. Often you’ll see the main character in some type of mess and everyone around them will rush to the rescue, but I see this poem from the point-of-view of the secondary characters that are always there when needed. When it says; “And I’ve appointed myself, To this position”, it makes me wonder how do you go from being the most important person in your own life to being everyone’s second.
    This poem really does a good job of describing what goes on when someone gets to the limit of how much they can give of themselves. I could really visualize the mental weight and struggle you go through when you carry everyone’s problems with you. I could also see that the author was getting to her limit and just needs the courage to start putting personal needs first.

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    Angelina

    October 20, 2021

    I read this poem a couple of times and each time I understood a sentence more than the other time. This poem is really eye-opening. It shows how much loving someone can destroy you, make you exhausted and vulnerable. The poem is well written and really conveys the whole I give to others before giving to myself. I will put others before myself. I love that you can understand the emotions written. Like written, you deserve someone. Everyone deserves to be loved. Everyone deserves to feel happy and feel like they matter. This poem shows that no matter how much you give to someone if you give to the wrong person it’ll only drain you.

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