Tuesday, May 5, 2009

"In 2009, Dorothy Speaks Out"

Something that came to me on the drive home from class today...

I am
too tired
to walk the yellow brick road
which stretches on for endless mile upon mile
up hill and down dale,
and besides,
my feet hurt
and these shoes are killing me.

For that matter, I am through with all
but emotionally-stable travel companions.
the Tin Man is insensitive and offends everyone we meet;
I have not had a moment to myself since the severely co-dependent Lion joined us,
and if I turn my back for one second the stupid Scarecrow will hurt himself or me – or both.
Don’t I have enough problems of my own, without babysitting three emotionally-challenged grown men?
Enough. I am done.

Besides that, I am not so sure that trekking down this road to meet the Wizard is the best way to find my place in the world.
This Wizard means well, I’m sure,
but Wizards are people too, and people make mistakes.
I would probably learn more from the experience
if I set out on my own path, my own journey
sought out my own guides of questionable nature
(perhaps write my memoirs when I’m through).

The state of Munchkin society bothers me –
Sure, there were riots of happiness in the street when I ‘liberated’ them from the Witch of the East,
but who’s to say that the vacuum of power will not be filled by another, even less desirable leader?
Besides, who was I to decide that the Witch deserved to die? After all, she
was a person too,
who had family who loved her.

That’s another thing – this sister Witch, the one from the West.
I’m not at all convinced she’s as evil as the Munchkin leaders would have me believe; am I not partially to blame, having killed her sister?
I am sure she is misunderstood,
and that if we could just sit down, woman to woman, and talk things through
that we could reach a peaceful agreement.
(I am sure her attacks so far have merely been in retaliation for my perceived crimes, and that if I assured her of my peaceful intentions to withdraw just as soon as possible, she would immediately lay down her arms.)

All in all, I am fed up with the whole state of affairs,
these poppies are so soft,
and I am so tired…

Monday, May 4, 2009

As Published In Connections - "When I..."

My introduction for the Connections reading:
Poet Lucille Clifton wrote a poem called "the lost baby poem" in which she speaks to her unborn child, her "almost-child," and thinks about the life it would have had if it had been born. If you believe, as I do, that life begins at conception and that we are all "fearfully and wonderfully made," then the loss of a child, even an unborn child, is a tragic loss, made all the more painful if the child was wanted and loved. I have several siblings who were lost in utero, and I've seen firsthand the very real pain that surrounds the loss of an unborn child.
On the other hand, I am reminded of a line from one of my favorite musicals, Steven Sondheim's "Into The Woods," where a not-so-wicked-witch reminds us that "wishes are children." Children are symbols of endless possibility, unrealized potential, and those of us who have not experienced firsthand the loss of a child have probably nourished a dream, a wish, that became so real to us that we felt we could touch it, "take it in [our] arms," only to wake up one day and realize that that dream was not to be.

When I
exhausted, weary beyond endurance,
fell into my bed, and my head hit the pillow,
I dreamed of a dark-haired babe
with eyes like hazelnuts,
dimples like the dips in chocolate candy
who laughed when she saw me, that laughter
reserved for the one called "mother."
And I took her in my arms,
my heart warm,
and kissed the downy head,
felt the softness of her skin against my own.
Then I awoke, suddenly, confused,
wondering at the ache in my empty arms.