The Blind Feeding the Lame: Growing Disabled with Dad
As I turned into a blind person, my dad metamorphosed into a disabled person.
The Atlantic Monthly,
M. Leona Godin is a writer, actor, artist, and educator who is blind.
She is currently working on Seeing & Not-Seeing: A Personal and
Cultural History of Blindness with Pantheon Books. Godin founded
Aromatica Poetica as a venue for exploring the arts and sciences of
smell and taste, an online magazine not specifically for, but
welcoming to, blind readers and writers. She is proud to be a 2019
Logan Nonfiction Fellow.
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The idea of exploitation seemed to me fraught with assumptions about what a blind person is supposed to do and be—assumptions that insist blind people be poets and prophets, saints or beggars, not lowbrow entertainers.
The sixth sense, second sight, third eye. We are supposed to have both extra-accurate hearing and perfect pitch, more numerous and more acute taste buds, a finer touch, a bloodhound’s sense of smell.
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I felt that whipping out the white cane would irrevocably launch me into the kingdom of the blind, and, for many years, I did not want to go there.