Sunday, April 12, 2015

A Letter on Behalf of Her

She is not your property. She was not created for your commands, your politics, your twisted sense of correct behavior. She is not defined by monetary value or by how much of her skin is concealed or revealed.

She is not your entertainment piece. The way her hair lays, the curves of her body, the way her clothes look upon her - none of that was crafted in order to be looked at with lust craven eyes. She is more than breasts in a shirt and an ass in jeans.

She is not your slave. Her heart was threaded, and is thrumming, with passion for life, love for the world, and a desire to know people. She is not a skeletal system with skin on in order to carry out your commands. She is designed with purpose.

She feels things. Even if you aren't privy to them. Your words have the ability to break her spirit or set her wild soul on fire. She is not an idea of a person, she is an actual person.

She is not at your beck and call. She doesn't need to be. She has a life - she had one before you and she can have one after you. Let her live. She'll thank you for it later.

She isn't weak because she wants to know you. The fibers within her, they are braided with honest, raw, good intentionality. She does not take the time to get to know you on a whim. She does not ask questions to pry - she simply longs to know your story.

She is not deaf or blind or insignificant. She is magic, fire, sinewy strength.

She is not a trophy for you to parade around.

She is not a toy that was crafted for your pleasure.

She is more than something for you to crave and capture.

Stop mislabeling, assuming, and mistreating her.

Keep your hands to yourself. Keep your words soft. Stop whistling.

She isn't a dog. She's not up for purchase.

She doesn't need you in her life. If she's giving of her time, it's because she wants you there.

She is your sister. Your best friend. Your future bride.

She is somebody's daughter. Somebody's champion. Somebody's confidante.

She's the girl behind you in the check out lane. The barista making your latte. The small voice in the back of the classroom.

She has dreams that matter. A voice worth listening to. A creative process that is as beautiful and timeless as her unkempt hair.

She has a past. But so do you. She's got a future, too. She'll make you laugh and she's unforgettable.

She is me.

Monday, April 6, 2015

A Letter to the Farm

The sky is always a sorbet and taffy-colored concoction over your thriving or barren fields. Why do I always taste candy melting on my tongue, breathless before you, in the back yard of the aging buildings?

I walk the long, rock-littered lane and suck in the fresh air as if my life were dependent upon it; I suppose there are fine moments between the arriving and departing that it does. That back barn - an empty cavern of high squeals and lost memories of children clad in Carhartt trying to figure out how to live like daddy - be like daddy. I look in between the rust bars and swear I can hear the laughter of the little girl still somewhere within me; she never knew how the return to all of this would both fuel the fire within her and develop an ache that was never to be localized and abandoned.

You gave me my first friends. We would arrive in a copper colored truck and wait for instruction, wait on a pointed finger . . . sometimes I think I'm still waiting. I look at the hills and the structures sitting upon them - I can still hear his raspy voice and the pull of the little brother - and the girl I so often looked up to. They were the world I knew - it rotated and spun around the ticking by of those days - I'd trade a heartstring to return to them - those days and those babies who thought the whole world would unfold and forever really would be eternal.

I watch these next pieces of the generation, scream-counting and gut-laughing, "READY OR NOT, HERE I COME!!!" and my heart - it threatens to implode on itself. I want the magic of this place in a bottle. I want the truth, deep down into the roots of your soil, to never be out of reach. Laugh, babies, I whisper, feather quiet, laugh and soak it in, and remember. Dear God, please help them remember the ties that bind.

The corn field has been left empty; cleaned out from the last harvest, but it will all flourish soon. And I suppose that's what this place is - emptied for seasons and then poured back into - with the laughter and the bickering -- it remembers who I was long before I knew it would be imperative to know where it was I came from.

We are grown now - living lives near and far from this farmhouse nestled in the land. And yet we return - to feed a hunger, to fulfill a duty, to celebrate and mourn; we return. You leave me longing for more; more of the yesterday, more time in the shared moments of today, more time with those who never got enough of the time . . .

You know where I came from - the red barns and the wide open space; You kiss my cheek with your sun scorched, orange skies. Giggles race against time as they run up to the house, screen door slapping back in to place.

Ready or not, here time comes . . .