Perspective Writing ~ An Exercise In Empathy

Perspective writing is all about Empathy. It teaches one to see from another perspective ~ of those you would not normally notice or care about. It takes you into the mind of another person. And whether the person is a fictional character in a book or a real person, with real problems, you can see through their eyes and feel what they feel.

So try it. Write from the perspective of someone else, imagined or real, that you would not normally consider, because they do not personally touch your life. Give thought to their situation, their physical reality (cloths, face, eyes, hands, the places they dwell in, etc.), and their emotional and mental state at the time of the writing. See through their eyes and write from their perspective.

Its amazing how eye opening this exercise can be.

Here is an example:

The Shadows of Society

It is dark beneath the shadow moon,
as she walks the streets,
alone in her plight.
She is no more than a wisp of smoke
to those who pass her by,
unnoticed and uncared for,
she is forgotten.

Her face is covered in filth and dirt,
caked layer upon layer,
and her eyes are glazed and empty as
her silent pleas for help go unheard.
A single tear smears the dirt as
it traces a path down her cheek
and falls onto the tattered rags
she wears to survive the elements.

She stares through windows
into a world of sheltered security
that she will never have,
that she will never be a part of,
and she can do nothing more
than stand in her confusion,
lost in the world of the past
when she walked among the living of society.

But always reality is brought back to hern
for she is shunned for being unable
to live up to the expectations of society
and she is disregarded as nothing more
than a burden upon society.

And she wonders where
she will sleep tonight,
and if she will live to see another day
of hunger and loneliness.

Yesterday she was a
wife and mother,
with a family,
a home,
and a job,
but today, well, today
she is a forgotten nothing,
and always
a shadow of society.

Drawing by J E Kristiansen

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~ by Misuchi Sakurai on August 22, 2009.

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