Lost Feminist

I don’t think I’m a bed feminist.

But I’m definitely a lost one. 

I’ve gotten so entwined in the idea of being equal that I’ve lost sight of being me. 

Every man I bring close into my life, I find myself eventually treating as a competitor. 

And I won’t even get started on how I massacre my self-worth when I share my world with a woman. 

I don’t want to wage this war. I don’t have a competitive code in my DNA. My heart can’t endure it. 

Until it comes to the person with whom I share my life. It’s not that I want to win. I simply need to be seen as a cohort and colleague, not a student. 

You starting a blog? So will I. 

You learning to cook? Me too 

Becoming fluent in Spanish? Lo mismo. 

And you know what? 

It’s exhausting. I’m barely crawling out of bed with the weight and heft of it. 

Worst? I bring every second of it on myself. 

That’s not feminism. That’s self-defeating bullshit. 

Feminism does not mean being the same. That’s being a middle-school girl. 

I don’t have to play guitar to be equal to my partner. I don’t have to be as strong of a writer. I don’t have to have as much money in the bank. 

What I do have to be is better. 

Better me. Not another version of them. 

Not fitting in and re-informing every heinous stereotype of the the nightmare over-sensitive woman. 

Asking for help, coming for instruction from someone who has had the luxury of education and experience is not weakness. It feels vulnerable but in that is the potential for growth. That’s empowerment. 

Treating a person as their own and not holding them accountable for reparations for every mid-deed I’ve encountered before we met. 

Let them make their own mistakes. I’ll be making mine, to be sure. That’s equality and respect. 

I know there’s peace on the other side. I can see it. The warmth of the light peaking is warming my fingers. 

I have words to give. And love. And compassion. And curiosity. And listening. And a willingness to work. That’s what I have. 

I don’t have to be the same. 

I don’t have to be better than. 

I can be a little lost. 

In the end, I know where I am. 

Just Shut Up

Shut up.

 It doesn’t matter. 

You think it does. You know you want it to. It might to you. 

Does that matter?

Are you sure it matters? Really sure? Because your brain, it lies. It doesn’t see what’s good and only screams what’s bad again 

And again

And again. 

Maybe it’s not that bad. 

Bet it’s not. Bet it’s nothing. 

Maybe you’re looking at black bark and knowing there are maggots and mold inside, instead of seeing the beauty of the tree. 

The crimson leaves. The cool shade. The good. There’s good there. You can see it. 

There might not be breaking at every branch. 

Shut up and stop swing your saw and digging teeth into everything growing around you. 

Cut it down, dig it up and you’ll be picnicing alone on parched earth, yellow grass and snakeskins for company. 

Not the worst, if the food still makes you smile. 

What if you can’t shut up?

What if your arms are swinging the ax and your throat is raw from ear cries, fighting to get to the core of what you planted with those same arms?

What if you can’t sleep, can’t rest, can’t stop until you know what’s buried?

And your shoulders quiver and your eyes sting with sweat and the tears can’t cool the burn-

Shut up. 

Keep wanting the leaves and the beauty. Get a spade and turn over the weeds. 

If you want to sit under that tree so much. 

So much.

So sit. 


Shut up. 

Unless you can’t. 

Then scream. 


Until every twig and bough

bends and threatens to upend.

If it’s quiet, and it’s firm in its roots,

and will not shuffle loose,

scream one last time. 

Then shut