Quote of the day...er...week...umm...hey, look, a quote!!
"...besides love, independence of thought is the greatest gift an adult can give a child." - Bryce Courtenay, The Power of One
For old quotes, look here.
For old quotes, look here.
Sunday, April 5, 2015
I am trying to live a creative, honest, compassionate life. It is no easy thing to struggle against myself and all the years of lies that I thought were my story. It is no easy thing to be open, always open, so that I may pierce myself to the core, or allow others to pierce, because being open is the only way I can be honest, because closing off, hiding, protecting, defending, these only cut me off from myself and from whatever it is that lends me creativity and lets me see beauty.
I'm not the story you told me, but I am not the story I've been writing, either. I'm changing the plot an inch at a time, a painful, slow, impossible inch at a time and I wonder how many more inches until I am living the life I seek instead of the life I let you shape out of stone and bars and thorns and shit.
I am trying to see more than what is commonly seen of this world, to look beyond the flat, hard, ugly surface to the rippling, effervescent, ever changing maelstrom that is the heart of the speck of the great big bang that rushes out into a Universe before it curls up into itself and re-imagines its creation, poor old Micheal Finnegan, begin again.
I am trying to see that the angry people are tender and sore and fierce about their soreness and the bitter people are frightened and lost and angry about their lostness, and that we're all of us feeling out of control and cut off and cut loose and like we missed out on something better, some vague something better that we keep hearing about everyone else having but can't quite grasp ourselves.
Because despite what you tried to make me over into, I AM a compassionate being, an angry and scared and hurt and scarred and lost and beautiful and damaged being, so much more than you could have ever imagined me to be and so much less than I may once have been when I was sound and whole, but that's not the me I am any more, you tore her to pieces so you could remake her into the image you thought she should be, into what you imagined she ought to be, all the while telling her how imperfect she was without also mentioning that it is our very imperfections that make us so mighty good and powerful and wonderful and godlike.
I wasn't my one cousin, blonde and perfect and pretty and smart and graceful and stylish, I wanted to sail boats and climb trees and ride horses, but not how she rode horses with precision and poise in a top hat and the Olympics wanted me, no, I wanted to ride horses in the woods and along winding roads and into the dining room and without saddles or bits or anything but the agreement that we were going together in some direction, both half-wild and completely free to chase the wind if we pleased.
I wasn't my other cousin, well behaved, demure, slender, elfish. I was an amazon, wide and tall and strong and you convinced me I was fat and ungainly and couldn't dance because I had no grace and couldn't wear those pretty dresses because I was too round in the middle and my shoulders, my world-holding, good-for-crying-on shoulders, were too wide to be feminine and I should hide, hide in closets and under tables and behind big, fake smiles so no one would see how ugly I was, such a shame, what an embarrassment to you, a let-down.
So I am trying to shed these stones you piled into my basket, but I have to be careful because some of them became part of my foundation and prying them loose could shake me to pieces, and some of them I want to keep and hold and love, yes, love, because they are precious and opened my eyes in a heavy, hurtful, roundabout, transformative way. They showed me something you never wanted me to see, would never had accepted, which is that I am, as I am, all of me, brilliant and I am not bound by the ropes you wrapped me in, I can slip free of them, make them into a hammock and take my ease in the breeze under the trees and forget your face set in disapproving lines and imagine you happy.
If you still want to shape someone into your paragon of feminine humanity, it is never too late to look in the mirror and see what you can see. As for me, I do not look into mirrors because I don't know what I am seeing - who I am or who you convinced me I was, and it's all too confusing and I'd rather look into the sky and ride the wind on a hawk blessing or lose myself in the heart of a flower where the color becomes something beyond sight and turns the world on its ear, or watch my daughter play in ways I never could with a freedom you would never allow, and perversely take pleasure in knowing you would hate the dirt and noise and realness of my force-of-nature children, and I am, after all, human, and I can forgive and still enjoy the idea of your discomfiture and it's only dirt or paint or marker and will come off eventually but the happiness that stains their souls is forever and it stains mine too and that's worth more than your approbation ever was.
And because I AM a creative, honest, compassionate being I can know what you did, look you and your monsters right in the eye and tell you that I wish you well, that I love you, and that I am and will only ever be myself, and not your piece of clay.