Same Hand (ASL Poem)

General information: You may share this video on social media and websites. Watch in high definition. Captions not provided, but read below for keywords and synopsis. The purpose of the synopsis is to provide a basic summary of the poem.

Image description: A white young man is standing in front of a orangish/whitish wall. He is wearing a white T-shirt, grey-ish pants, and a brown belt.

Purpose: I created this poem to highlight the capacity of ASL in describing abstract ideas.

Keywords: different, hand, name, human, separation, dream, five senses, search

Synopsis: The beginning statement claims that we are all different but a part of the same hand, and that underneath the ASL sign for all of our names is the one label that says “human.” Then, the poem says that any form of separation (including superiority and inferiority) is the dream of the five senses, which proves that we are asleep. The mind sees through appearances and understands the sameness, which is vague but clear in the ASL sign for abstraction. Then, the speaker says that he/she is literally sitting above the dream of any separation, and that a second person is searching through the dreamtime for the speaker. Only by closing one’s eyes (and simultaneously collapsing the dream in the same ASL sign) can the second person see the speaker shining, who is in fact the same one person.

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