Ladies of the Night

They tried to challenge you.  Your values. Your beliefs.  The one’s you bragged about and the one’s you never knew you had.  You stand on corners.  You go on ‘dates’. You wander streets at night.  In winter you shiver in tights. You wear bright lipstick. In summer you sweat in short skirts.  You have two names.   You take rides from strangers.  You believe lies.  You sell love.  You make monarchs in your mind trying to find prayers previously defined.

But remember you are not a product.  You do not have an expiration date. You are not old, used or new.  Your value does not go down with each experience.  You do not have a finite capacity, like a phone card, after which you are used up.  Neither are you a substance that can be pure or impure. You are no less pure now than when you were born.  You will never be less pure than you are right now.

You are not an object upon which marks are left for others to discover and interpret. You are not a secret code to decipher. You are not a public place where things are written for others to read. You are not a painting to be considered art.  You are not an exotic land that people have visited.   You are not a collection of experiences like snapshots in an album, subject to perusal and approval by others.

Your past is not a term paper for someone to grade.  Your past is not something that needs to be repaired. You can’t get up on top of it with a ladder and fix it like a roof.  You can’t do anything about it except regard it with awed attention. It is like the sea, far beyond us, far too deep, far too wide, and far too powerful.

 

You are not a product, or a substance, or an object.  You are not any of these things. For lack of a better term, you are a creature, a spiritual being. The world and your friends tell you who you are.  But they lie.  You are a heart.  You pump blood to every inch and corridor of you soul.

You are a creature of flesh and light and movement. You go through life. Things happen. You do things. You remember things. Things hurt you, things delight you, and things frighten you. You go on. You describe the things that have happened to you and look for the light of understanding in someone’s eyes. You are a creature who loves and hates. You love and hate and are loved and hated and you go on.

Your past is not a map on your skin, visible to someone’s gaze. Your past is something you tell. Once you tell it, people sometimes turn away. They can’t bear it. They’re not strong enough. They have to find the strength.  You can’t give them the strength. They ask you to put the past back in the past, but you can’t do that either. Once you tell it, it’s with you in the present.

Judging eyes twist their own veins and constrict its flow. Forget Them.   Their heartbeat will quicken and their vulgar speech will flow unconventional.   Forget Them. Meaningless thoughts will cripple them.  Forget Them.  Plagued with monotonous bull shit they will cut you down. Forget Them.  Able-bodied men will muster mischief. Forget Them.  Foul tastes will linger in the mouths of children. Forget Them.  They will filter flawed fears and remain fixed.  Forget Them. They will stand still in the portraits of their past. Forget Them.

 They are skeptics and sinners, pessimists and dreamers. The lies that stem from the bottom of their cribs as they judge and compare and criticize and condemn.

But for what?

You were taught to love animals and to love whales but love yourself?  They never showed you the trail. Like searching for a ghost in a house that was never haunted or waiting for a spiritual awakening that just won’t come. But ghosts don’t have to be dead to walk through your halls their just the souls still alive waiting for their final curtain call.

All is not lost.

One day they will gain some wisdom and some understanding. They will find some humility and some awe. They will sit by the sea and think about it for days, until their head hurts and they’re thirsty and all they want is you — however you are, whoever you are, wherever you’ve been, whatever you’ve done.

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