I am in the library, waiting for the arrival of my student. I tutor a young woman of 25, the mother of 2 with a third on the way. She is Mexican, from Durango. She wants to learn to read to her children. I find that noble. It touches me to the core of my being.
I have a million voices inside of me screaming to be released. I have stories and thoughts and feelings that scratch at my insides. Where do I start? How do I open the steel-barred doors that hold them within?
I have a poet’s soul and the mind of a scientist. They don’t always mix well. My words tend to be stilted because the logical side of me is holding back. I want to pour my heart out; exclaim the joys and disclaim the atrocities that I witness.
It is fear; I fear failure, of not being good enough.
I want my writings to be accepted, to be well-received. I want to be noticed. I want my wit and charm — my intelligence — to shine through. I want others to be impressed, if even a tiny bit, by me.
My voice is quiet. I’m more like a mouse and I want to be an eagle. I want to soar, to fly and take in the world. I am tired of running to the nearest corner and cowering in the tiniest of cracks.
Sometimes I find bravery. I leap out of the starting gate in great form. Somehow, somewhere, I mis-step, trip, lose my place, and lag behind. I haven’t found the boldness to race ahead proudly with power and grace.
I know some are born with enough self-confidence to always charge forward. I was not that fortunate. I fight for it daily. I ask for help and have learned to lean on others – sometimes too much.
I want to be strong. I want to stand tall, with pride and self-assuredness.
This is me, naked before you, taking a step.
I am tired, beloved, of chafing my heart against
The want of you;
Of squeezing it into little inkdrops,
And posting it.
And I scald alone, here,
Under the fire of the great moon.
~ Amy Lowell (1874-1925)
“Trust each other again and again. When the trust level gets high enough, people transcend apparent limits, discovering new and awesome abilities for which they were previously unaware.”
~ David Armistead