Over the years I chastised myself for being naïve, for inviting him to stay the weekend. That second guessing is what stopped me from telling
an open letter read aloud to my sexually-assaulted self while I stare at the floor and shuffle my feet
Click the ‘Read More’ link to listen to the author read her open letter – it’s to herself, and it’s to you: Hey. I know
The first time I died, I felt fireworks shoot down my legs and I could taste their colors: red like your heart before it stopped
Smudge. I hate that word. Smudge. Do you say it in two syllables, or three? [My Arkansas friend says it in three.
I choose to live in pain. Let me tell you why. Flannery O’Connor once said sickness was a place, as real and enlightening as a
We were as tall as the Hollyhocks were the year you had to leave me. When fairies could still be seen sleeping in the perfume
When I was a girl, I came late and without my assignment to the classroom Joane Katsiff kept in woodsy Pennsylvania. Back then, I was scared to open my mouth in case sounds might come out. I couldn’t seem to say or do anything normal. Strange longings and excitements beat in my chest, and I stayed up all night walking in the dark, and putting my fingers into candle flames. I ate my lunch alone in a bathroom stall. I didn’t know what kind of disease I had, only that it was one of isolation.
It’s easier to not be embarrassed by a body if you don’t consider it your own. In the hospital, my body became a body of work. I felt no shame about being undressed, because nothing was projected onto me. My body was a scientific body. A body of fact. It was unrelated to me.
I planted dozens of manuka (where that expensive honey comes from), kanuka, harakeke (flax) among other species as it rained ensuring I became a sufficiently muddy eco warrior woman that apparently pampers each tree too much. The earth is heavy and as I plant manuka in the rain I think about how it’s simple acts that have profound effects. This simple repetitive act is the slow regeneration of what has been lost through one of the world’s most pressing issues: deforestation.