apollo

this is how I imagine us

this is how I imagine you
sitting below deck beside a round window full with a wet blue sky of salt and fish
there’s a novel in your hand by someone who is not you;  light around you, but what’s inside is drowning from the doubt and Time

this is how I imagine me
a spirit in the woods weaving through old trees as ancient as my soul
there is a burrow where I hide my secrets, and a small meadow where I dance and write and sing; light above me, but my heart is forever clinging coolly to the shade

this is how I imagine us
we are near the forest and the sea, where light touches everything
there are grand windows, spools of thread, cascades of books, by us and by them
our walls are filled with what we find beautiful and harmful and true
there is a garden with old trees, butterflies, and a rocky shore
beyond is our escape, an unnamed boat that dips and turns at the dock, tied to its rope as
I am tied to your will


this is how I imagine us
a life where we have everything because we have each other
neither is left behind
feelings never overlooked
promises never left unfulfilled
a scale eternally balance
two souls forever curious and adventurous. 

 

 

with her | a letter

we grow. we bloom. we are coveted & plucked.

we grow. we bloom. we are coveted & plucked.

I will not give love to those who approach me with hatred.

I want to be honest with my fellow woman. I want to be strong with you and for you. I am afraid of what you’ll say; I’m scared of what you’ll think; I’m terrified of the lies I have told; I’m angry with the world; I can’t set an example for you when I am hiding.
Who is the enemy? Men are survivors of abuse, gender stereotypes, and expectation too. I haven’t forgotten you.
I have been hurt by a woman and I have been hurt by a man. I have hurt a woman and I have hurt a man. I have hated a woman and I have hated a man. I have loved a woman and I have loved a man. I have forgiven, laughed, and cried, with both.

…This is our truth… I am afraid of a man overpowering me…I will fight, thrash, and scream until you silence me… I will walk alone in the woods at night, but never alone on a dark street…The true monsters walk among us…

“Yes, you do.”

 One bright afternoon, I felt like walking. I walked with my friend down the beach. We stared at our feet because the sun hurt our eyes. We both wear glasses.

We avoid the depths for fear of the shark, but drink carelessly in a sea of rapists who don’t know they’re raping.

We sat at the bar. The beer was cool, the corn dogs I ordered were hot and yummy, and she ordered cheese that was fried into little messy chunks. Southerners like everything fried.

We are afraid of calories making us fat, not of beauty making us targets.

The restaurant was only a few blocks from my condo. “Let’s take the sidewalk,” I said. “Sure,” she shrugged, and we talked about who we were in love with.

We care if they’ll make handsome children, but not if they raise a new generation of predators.

A man and his dog were in front of us. A bulldog, if I remember correctly. The man had gray hair, glasses, and was thinking about his life, I think.

We worry for the cost, not for the victims survivors.

We kept close to him.

We believe that someone will save us, but when the time comes our screams aren’t heard.

She walked closest to the road.

We fear being hit by a car, not that we could be followed.

I watched a young guy on a bike approach. He almost hit the curb as he skidded toward us. He halted and asked, “Can I have some cash?”

We fear appearing poor, but not being hurt for seeming rich.

New baseball cap. Bike in perfect condition. Clothes not tattered or old. No bags heavily strapped to his back because he had no place to leave them.

We take for granted emotional generosity, but leave happy dirty kisses on the cheeks of blank checks.

I don’t know you.

We ask for something, but never ask if something is needed.

“I’m so sorry, but I don’t have any cash on me,” I said. I meant it. I felt sorry. I don’t know you.

We are taught to face our demons, but are not prepared when they are tangible and threatening us.

“Yes, you do,” he sneered and rode off.

We are blamed for saying “no” and we are judged for saying “yes.”

 

I didn’t hear him; I had watched his face.

We are forever changed, but expected to behave the same.

I saw anger.

We are angry, but we are strong.

I wished in that moment that he feared me as much as I prepared to fear him.

We are lost, but we are still breathing.

 

 

 

one in three

collect the courage to tap the shoulder of one person and say, “I’m lost and I’m scared

Shine the light on those who need help battling their darkness.

The private battles are the ones I admire most. The people who aren’t crying out for attention, but rather manage to collect the courage to tap the shoulder of one person and say, “I’m lost and I’m scared.” I see people filling their bellies by throwing a line blindly into a sea of social media platforms prepared to praise and make them a celebrity for their pain. Shortly, we forget the message: there are people who have and who are going through this right now. What about them? The faceless souls wandering around without hope. Those are the people I want to talk to, those are the stories I want to hear face-to-face. Those people, those stories, are all around us. Open your eyes. Be known for what you make happen for yourself, not for what has happened to you. Be intimate and private, not secretive or loud about your struggles. Venture out into the world prepared to help someone else, to inspire, motivate, and prevail.