I suppose I, as a writer can be ignorant and forget how empowering and therapeutic being able to write is and how creative it is. This is is something that every woman should be able to access. I saw the results of the works of creativity in every face at ‘Behind the mask’ exhibition this today.
The exhibition was led by a passionate presentation by the highly charismatic Sharon Marsden from verd de gris
I spent most of my time in tears. All masks shed to connect with British white and British Muslim woman through the medium of poetry, their personal words and singing. Yes, what a strange bonding power it is to want to join in and sing with strangers.
All connected by our desire to be unburdened, it released even me from my cage. Today, I flew high and found my voice intermingled amongst a collective . I didn’t need to say a word. Someone already had and I identified completely. I had a taste of the 12-week journey these highly courageous women have been through. It reminds me of my own journey in life as a woman. I’m not alone. We are not alone. As painful as some of these emotions were to witness and experience the exhibition left on a high – I was carried away with a powerful gust of optimism and newfound courage to carry on in my own journey in life.
All faiths, all ages, all complex woman with the desire to be free from pain and to be free to show their real face and not wait for the words of acceptance . The message I took away is this:
This is me! take me or leave. I will not hide behind any more masks for you or anyone.
Here is my crane symbol to remind me that I too can be that bird that ‘flies to the heavens’
The crane is a popular symbol in Asian culture, and the practice of folding paper cranes for good fortune, healing, happiness, and success was popularized by Sadako Sasaki, a young victim of the radiation from the Hiroshima disaster. Chains of paper cranes, often numbering a thousand in total, are given as offerings at temples and shrines. The crane is also perceived as a bird capable of flying to the very heavens, and is said to have borne spirits of the deceased there upon its back. In ancient China, the crane was used as the symbol of highest-ranking officials.
Read more at http://www.beliefnet.com/Wellness/Environment/Galleries/A-Spiritual-Field-Guide-to-Birds.aspx?p=6#JvmBs22BfFs8PL8B.99
Caged Bird Excerpt
The caged bird sings
with a fearful trill
of things unknown
but longed for still
and his tune is heard
on the distant hill
for the caged bird
sings of freedom.
Female empowerment is continuing well into 2016. NEW RECRUITS NEEDED FOR THE NEXT BEHIND THE MASK COMING SOON!
I have also been moved to boldly upload my first video blog. What better inspiration than to speak with female empowerment. Seven minutes long but no apologies for what comes from the heart.
Fall – leaves turn shades of browns and greens.
my heart dips and I don’t feel that same sense of summer’s beams.
Alone. I look to my left. Creativity shines- glitter, stilettos- latex, white faux fur coats. All legs.
Like a string of pearls flung across a room, a musky scent wafts across my midst.
Temptations persist. Glamour. Warmth is all I seek. Summer, why do you have to be so cruel?
I know if I cross over to the other side – I’ll be feeling the warmth – it will be pimped out inbox ring styles – I won’t have time to dodge the fists.
My body will burn up an exotic shade of hues. I will have no rest.
Hell is the other side of Summers gluttonous jazz bassline.
One hit. One vein. Blood – artificial nirvana could infiltrate my being.
I won’t have to think of the biting cold that is ringing in my ears. Muffled will be the ice cone, frozen on the edge of my nose. It doesn’t matter who sees that I have been seen.
Bus shelters full, spikes erect from the corporate underground – I can’t sit down. I know it takes fewer muscles to smile than frown.
Energy is all I have to see me through this cycle of undomesticated abuse. October may be Domestic abuse awareness month.
If I hadn’t left my keeper, I would still have a roof over my head.
I would still be touched.
Better the devil you know – I know every one of his moves. I know when to dissociate –
detach my mind
from my body.
Floating above the marital, martial art stylised bed – I see myself and that devil I married, grabbing folds of my skin. He doesn’t notice the smell of the new conditioner I bought at Asda or how soft the sheets feel now they have been newly spun.
Dryer. I’m dry. He doesn’t notice the lack of moisture. He doesn’t notice that all of that fluid has shot up to my eyeballs. I refuse to let them free flow – I am not her. I’m floating.
Fly on the wall. Caught up in a spiders web. I have to watch. It doesn’t matter if I have a crick in my neck – oh hang on a minute is he choking me?
Leftover food languishing in the sink drain. He switched the waste disposal on to automatic.
Arrested, I am back in bed, under him. Time to vogue with my lips and give him a little pucker.
These white sheets have turned red in his need to let off steam. I come out in blisters hovering underneath his vapour.
Turn my neck – feels like I need a box of throat lozenges for having to get all deep throat.
5 am flashing in stimulant green.
I’m 5 months pregnant. I am going to be late.
Grab the nearest decent clothes. Pull-on my Adidas trainers. Scrape my hair up into a ponytail.
Finally the motivation to go on the run. I don’t have to time myself. I know his schedule well.
An Olympic torch passes into my hand. I’m running for freedom. Liberty is my destination.
I can start over.
Spring – blues, violets, colours in a perfect union – uncompressed. Naturally dressed.
For the first time in months, I feel like I belong. I too am a medley of colours. I blend in.
Natures milkshake collects in my breasts – 4 months to go until I give birth to a miracle of pure life.
Not branded a colour – just innocence – a chance to see a light – work on my soul and tackle it all. This is the only cure.
I am no Killer.
Life goes in cycles. It passes by fast. There are no traffic jams when you have to pick up your feet and walk.
Eyes cast down, belly protruding.
Christian volunteers crouch down next to me- hand me a card.
Die and be reborn.
They can help me. I just have to give my old life to our saviour. I’ve never met him but he sounds
Forgiving, comforting, caressing- a handwash with extra Aloe vera – calming properties.
All I have to do is offer my unborn child to him and I can enter paradise with the rest of my weary comrades.
Eyes raise up to the bitter sky. I’ve always thought whatever is up there twinkling and winking down at me is having a far better time than me.
My unborn deserves a place in heaven. Earth only promises scars and wild jungle roots to keep it grounded to the spot.
The ultimate sacrifice.
Did I fold in with this cult out of cowardice?
I will drink my poison.
Maybe this winter I will be reunited with the one that let out a sudden cry.
Lead me not into temptation. I lie down, no need to be afraid, child. I close my eyes and sigh.
Hope is my last premise.
* Inspired by domestic violence awareness month*
HERE IS A LINK TO A POST I WROTE,ON 11TH MAY 2016 , ABOUT MY OWN PERSONAL EXPERIENCES IN A D.V. RELATIONSHIP , TO RAISE DOMESTIC ABUSE AWARENESS IN MY COMMUNITY AND SOCIETY.
CLICK ON THE PINK HIGHLIGHTED LINK BELOW
*photo credit Rhode Island Francesca Woodman, Benjamin Moore *
Lazily, a tigeress snores into her paws . If only retiring was as simple to rule her inner world.
Curled up in warmth after a stroll into the big wide world,then settle for a quinquennium pause.
Her heart beats.
Nationalists- not even patriots are exempt.
All want to play in their own chord, tighten the strings ,she keeps it together, to satisfy their crucified minds.
In a state of constant – motionless movement.
If not an act of physicality -drill cumbersomely inside her cranium and you will see chemicals and synapses – making up fresh bricks and mortar, to fit in with the latest homemade yeast infused hootchie.
Glance away now, for fear of pitying an evocative attempt to get a rise from it.
Secret plots to charge this queen with treason.
Where will she live?
Her throne burnt to the ground to make way for a newly elected dopamine and serotonin scrupulous , democratic union.
Flags of self-belief – burned infringed – protecting her staked land was all this monarch tried to take into hand.
Defamation – character assassination.
Cloaked – in darkness- rat scuttles past – no pause – it already knows this violated prisoner is barren.
Scars and welts – a confession is sought after by the cardinal living east of the castle manor.
Employed only to instill courage when the most powerful empire seized a chance to escape into heritic souls howling in the wind.
Faith and Hope – not draft an erratic, purple, incensed dogmatic pope .
Dire retribution -execute the one who claims this state is her very birthright.
Clubbed to her knees – she will crawl not humbly- you shall hear her plea.
She wants to make them a better nation.
It’s her biggest exclamation.
Out plotted by her very own court – bribed by cheap whores-given away by the roughness of their hands, dressed up as expert courtesans, who clearly have seen at least one day of sun.
Intoxicated by some amorphous potion.
Formalyhde doused in cleaveaged lace dresses – it was not her initial notion.
A scented air of burning flesh
A greek tragedy indeed.
Scorned by her very owns subjects . She may be longitiduely dimintitive but she refuses to be bullied into showing them that wanted emotion.
Defeatist attitude does not a fit queen make.
Words in a precise order do not prize a piece of art,
so clearly a fake.
Forgiveness is her only weapon. She won’t see her country be overrun by zealous creachers.
It would appear her subjects wish to prove that she is illiterate.
Tortured, holding her breath under water to procure a confession – let her reiterate.
The crown is made to fit one head – It is symbolic and vaporizes with her when she exhales all energy and is varnished as dead.
Look how you’ve turned on one another – in the pursuit of power. It is a notorious illusion.
To master control over all subjects requires more than an iron-clad fist and an outraged dalliance to declare outright confusion.
recognition and honor are what she offers,
accept these as the wealthiest of gifts.
Only a fool would scream,
‘Off with her head‘ -a face full of sour lemons and a lust to frazzle the last tether.
The Noblest of causes – so much bloodshed – look into her bloody, vein threaded eyes.
She hasn’t slept for weeks in her fight, to appease all those in famine, hungry and underfed.
She needs no steering Regent to aid her in her duty.
All she demands is loyalty and valor.
With you all at her side ready to conquer life’s copious battles,
we shall not go down .
your hearts will not know the true grief inflicted made up of another community of arrows.
we shall not waiver.
Trust in your queen to walk as a stout cripple ,duty bound to protect and hold it all together.
*Stream of consciousness writing helped conjure this character that I developed for the short story*