“Your mess is your message.” — Emily Blefeld
Can I dare to show up like this,
messy as a child who has been playing
in the mud
wearing her best white Sunday school dress
and having lost a shoe?
Recrimination is unavoidable.
This little girl
with the joy of discovery
had it punished out of her
by busy adults who didn’t bother
to keep her safe.
When does she get to say out loud,
I am afraid?
I need some space here.
I carry her sometimes deep
in my heart, but at other times
she grabs the wheel and
she is speeding away from all of you
with complete disregard
for the rules of safety.
When I feel strong, I peel back layers
shame, guilt, fear
that have been dressing me up
as reasonable, even civilized.
It’s not that I want to appear before you
naked, but I am impelled to strip
away cultural inhibitions
and language that stifles
I will not be silenced;
without words the powerful force
transforms the world.