Greetings from the Land of Enchantment: Coming Home

Thursday, October 20, 2016

Coming Home

The orange-haired monster now running for president has silenced so many woman, his power alone silences most; his capacity for slander and bile silences the rest. I have never been subject to his particular brand of "hands-on" misogyny but I have been silenced nonetheless. The feelings, the memories his rhetoric has triggered leaves me feeling hollow, burned but not clean. There's a heaviness, a confusion, a sense of fighting through mud which has swallowed up all my words. Consumed the source of my power--my voice. So today, after a more than a week of silence and wondering where the words went, I made myself sit with the silence and allow it to speak. Allowed myself to come home--to myself.

I Came Home

I came home from elementary school
Crying that I felt raped
A boy had kicked me
I felt violated.
My mother asked,
How do you even know the word

I came home from middle school
Knowing something was very wrong
A girl in the grade below me was
How could it be? She was
Younger than me.

I came home from a pool party
Feeling slightly sick to my stomach
Not knowing why:
His words made me feel so
The way he looked at me
Made me want to

I came home from bible camp
And all I can remember
Is the feel of him
Against my leg,
Exciting and also scary.
Still, I wondered why
something inside me is
So very sad.

I came home from my sleepover,
After my first kiss,
A first kiss I wanted,
A first kiss I positioned myself for,
But it did not go as I had imagined--
Things never do. There was no
Sweetness, there was nothing tender.
It was all so very mechanical, so very

I came home from my first date,
He was older than me, too old,
I don’t know why but my parents approved.
He touched my thigh,
too high,
He kissed me
Without knowing me.

I came home from my first year of college
With a boyfriend, a nice guy,
My parents liked him
more than I did.
He cried the last time we made love
His tears fell on my “good girl” dress
handmade by my mother and I
Raged with a white hot heat.
I never wore it again.

I came home after the first time
I made love to someone
I actually loved,
Looking into his eyes
I lost my breath.
I can’t breathe.
I curled up on the bathroom floor
Panic--in full flight.

I came home from my first
One night stand
And felt so powerful--
So safe:
No names, no need,
Just pure gravity,
The pull of the other
And the self up in flames.

I came home years later
a man on my arm.
Better than I deserved,
not anything like what I expected,
truer to me than I could
ever be to myself.
I came home
to love.


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