Hero Child

    on the pedestal
Biography Barbara Rogers
Foreword: A Hero Child
Chapter 1
Table of Contents
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  written in Germany, fall of 2002

frightened—helpless—stretched out—flat on my tummy
I am lying high on a small plateau that barely surrounds me
and drops down steeply onto another plateau
from which again a steep escarpment is dropping
I try to get up—but when I put down my right foot
I break the ground beneath it
as if it was an artificial cardboard floor
no firm ground under my feet—no room to move
if I move—I will fall off the plateau—I do not dare to move

my dream fills me with hopeless fear
I have no clue how to get out of this predicament
I see no stairs—no rocks—no way to climb down
isolated and lonely I am stuck up there with no way out

this scary dream reveals the hopeless predicament
of the family showpiece—the eldest
positioned high above her brothers and sisters
she has to shine for her family
with her talents she has to produce great achievements
for which she then is envied and resented—even by her parents

her task is to guarantee her family’s honor
to be something special—her parents’ pride—
yet at the same time she is told over and over again
don’t think that you are anything special
who do you think you are?
don’t make your brothers and sisters feel bad
don’t be conceited—don’t show off
secretly everyone is waiting—or even wishes for her
to fall off the pedestal and crash

© Barbara Rogers

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Screams from Childhood