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We Are Exposed but at Least We Are True

A house. Just a house. White walls, worn wooden floors, wearied door knobs. Absent of life—until these human hands of ours brand their soul-stamp upon it. We the natural. We the alive—with all these pulsing memories, desires, identities—swirling inside of us like the summertime fireflies claustrophobic in a too-small mason jar. A thousand little flickering lights. Quietly brilliant. Knowing they are realest when uncaged.

Manifested by our bravery to crack the silver lid & let them out & land where they so choose. & once they are free, we are exposed but at least we are true. Our light. Our individuality. Gracefully stamped upon once-empty-walls. As one flies out, so flies another. A freedom march proceeds. Brave & dauntless & so aware of their liberation that they grow unaware of all the onlookers.

We the original. We the gatekeepers of our originality. We choose—to liberate, or to oppress—all that is beautiful & creative within us. One thought of rejection & the winds of inspiration dissipate. The breeze-blown wave of individuality rushes back to the deep sea, hiding with all the others that are too, secretly burning to be seen. They eclipse amongst themselves believing the lie that safe is better than free. And for their lack of courage, they never make it to the shore. The thirsty, coastline spectators…robbed. They do not get to see the remarkable pattern in the sand that the wave would have crafted, nor the magnificent seashells & bleached driftwood & speckled pebbles. All these natural extraordinaries—stripped of their right to be gazed upon with wonder. Paralyzed in repose, with all that unbecoming fear.

But when we choose to rush into the shoreline, unabashedly & unashamedly …we are free & in our freedom we set the other waiting waves free.

We the permission-givers. In simply being who we are, we grant permission to others to be who they are.

So here we all are. Waves & jars of fireflies. Our breaths become lives because of them. Our houses become homes because of them. Blank walls turned into capsules of memories and canvases baring our soul strings. The new & the old. The dark & the shimmering.

A pinned up, a sun-bleached American flag from that one store that one day with that one sister of a friend. The way we laughed on the car ride home.

A hanging Florida terrarium set given by your husband’s mother at the time you needed a heart-lift the most. A hint of home never felt so healing.

A pinecone from that one Tallahassee tree that has seen you read so many Sunday’s. Nostalgia wells up, so tangible you can touch it.

All these objects whispering who we are, where we came from & where we are going. A single corner singing of so many stories.

For when we impress ourselves—our true selves—upon our home—the walls, the curtains, the knick-knacks—will remind us who we are, right when we least expect it—right when we have forgotten.

Words by Abigail Green // Photography by Johanna Mariel // Featuring Lisa Diederich & J Tyler

© 2015 Reef Magazine


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