I asked Alisha Sommer, the luscious Our Word guide to throw something my way, anything, a prompt stemming from her week's content that was going to make me want to dive in. Knowing Alisha as a human, writer, guide, I knew it would be good and simple and layered. And she brought me to my knees in grace and her truth blew massive amounts of air right into my heart. She is uncensored stability and mystery’s cascade. She’s also a really righteous and funny and kind person. And I think if you are writing or wanting to write, working with her is something you should seriously think about doing. Because she pretty much rocks it.
And here is what she sent my way:
* * *
In quickness is truth. The more swiftly you write, the more honest you are. In hesitation is thought. In delay comes the effort for a style, instead of leaping upon truth which is the only style worth deadfalling or tiger-trapping.”
― Ray Bradbury
Swiftly, with your flaming heart, leap upon your truth.
What words are ready to burn through with a quickness?
* * *
It’s time to listen to these hips.
They want it all. They want to take up space in every room, in every home. They want you to know they are self- possessed. That they do exactly what they want to do when they want to do it. That they are ready when the sky is slate and the light slips and the moon becomes a map to their longing.
They scream to live a life of call and response, direct dialing, pulling, knowing, pushing, lowering. They want to be the one and only true love to timbre, to bass. They want to rest deep in the flesh of the downbeat. They want to love and love hard. They want to pound it down like the heart does, they want their own sound, their own rhyme and meter. They want a language to speak with no bind to any lexicon. At night they will sound like a catcall under the star fire as we claw at the earth, digging for a place to call home.
They want to talk of the times they were not allowed to talk, or not allowed to move in the ways they saw trees bend in wind or the way they wanted to feel wide open and wrapped around pure pleasure. Or about the day the got lost in the city and gathered whistles inside their bone.
I am a primal these days. I want the most basic level of enjoyable and pleasing and earthly. I want simple food, decent rest, good sex, a warm bed and a garden to grow what I need. I want to feel something that has been misplaced, something un-digital, the opposite of frantic or static or deadlined and absent all processing. Something with a rhythm that feels as slow as dripping honey.
And within all this, I seek a hidden key, preferably golden and if not golden then brass and if not brass than carved from the finest wood. And then I imagine shoving it in each of my sides, ripping through layers of unwanted bullshit and turning it hard and deep right against the bone. Or using my hands to reach inside and unzip what is stuck and letting what is tangled and bound hang from the inside out. What’s caged and living within the coccyx and sacrum and pelvic floor and those lower little vertebrae - gets to go on and big up themselves and get loud and be wild and wind free.
My hips didn’t always feel caged.
Before being in the womb my hips bumped into nebulas and slowly surrounded the galaxies in sensual gyration. They would burst open in light shows with Mars and show off for Venus. When I was in my mother apparently I danced a dance that felt impolite and unladylike, a rotating and winding that jolted her ribs and made her pee her pants daily and wonder what kind of animal lived within her. The truth is- I came out of her moving, she was strapped down tight and told to lie still, but I moved my way out. My hips, each one on top of the other and then rotating back, side by side again. They were pliable and willing and able to speak my first truths of life: I am here.
I have scaled across floors in survival, silently, not to be heard, my hips moving back and forth without squeaking the wide wooden planks.
I have squeezed in between rock walls to know what the earth wanted and anchored my body against the shallow sea floor so I wouldn’t be stolen by whip of her waves.
I have stood up. And sat down. I have swam and fucked and ran and rolled and birthed babies one after the other, all from my hips.
I have danced without moving anything on my body besides my hips because I think for me, everything is suppose to come from there.
What makes these hips lock? I cannot figure it out, but it’s most likely shame. And then there is fear. And neglect. And emptiness. And of course sitting in this fucking chair as much as I do trying to juice words from them, because it is in my hips that most of my stories live and have lived since eden.
And because we are told we must squeeze ourselves tight into them,
cannot be wide
or take up too much space.
Because we are told they need to be narrow and quiet to fit into a world I realize I have absolutely no interest in being a part of. Because my hips are meant to unhinge, unlock, get bigger, expand, fit into nothing. My hips want to be seen. Because it's true, they have held and birthed the world.
But here is the real truth. The sky will move from north, south, east, west and back again. And there I will be standing in the center at the right place and right time and saying, oh yeah, there it is. And big fat wide and unruly hips will make the sounds of thunder across the desert. And all of sudden the stars pour through me, settle in my hips, shoot across my pelvic bone, melt into the soft muscular tissue and I will feel them all find space in their new home and they will feel really fucking good. And my hips will be oiled with cosmic goo and the doors will all be flung open and I will walk through them, all of them, or maybe just The One, but it feels so good to walk the way I have always meant to walk. And it feels so good to dance the way I danced in the womb, but with more space and floor and light and spiced rum and music that is tastable and sound that is fuckable. And I will ride lovers. Whatever ones I want and only the ones I want and only the ones that can handle the tabernacle of these hips. The way we were meant to ride them, full of lusty love and raw respect because it feels good and it feels right and because it is True.
My truth, right now, is a leap and a jump and my heart fire says to me move like the way creation moved to bring us all home, unzip your hips and make them big. Wind and grind them as you like. Set them free.
photo by Alison Sidders
Homage To My Hips
these hips are big hips
they need space to
move around in.
they don't fit into little
petty places. these hips
are free hips.
they don't like to be held back.
these hips have never been enslaved,
they go where they want to go
they do what they want to do.
these hips are mighty hips.
these hips are magic hips.
i have known them
to put a spell on a man and
spin him like a top!
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