The Truth About Words

the dilemma
of finding my voice
is that it was
not enough
simply to speak
this voice
which lay dormant
inside of me for so long
buried beneath
relentless responsibilities
overdeveloped superego
weighty titles such as
rarely woman
rarely even human being
had become voracious

what I thought
merely a trickle
of words
awakened by the world’s injustices
an ache that pierced my heart
grew rapidly
into the flow
of a kitchen tap
when given some room
it became the steady stream
of a garden hose
it threatened to explode
like a fire hydrant
then roared with the ferocity
of a river long damned
against its nature
against its will
obliterating all obstacles
real and imagined
in its path

I didn’t know
hadn’t realized
that all this lay within me
spring-coiled with tension
patiently waiting
for a small crack
to appear
allowing those first tentative words
to seep out

I exposed those first words
to air
to light
unsure if anyone would
see them
feel their texture
nod in recognition
truly understand
my soul transubstantiated
in words

it was thrilling
when I realized my words
had an audience
outside my own ear
but that audience
bigger than
I had ever had before
was not enough
the time I put aside for words
was not enough
my voice
so long suppressed
demanded more and more

it whispered
in the middle of the night
spoke to me during my commute
sang to me in the shower
causing me to be late
because I had to write the words down
lest they slip down the drain
lost forever
my voice started to call out
when I should be doing
other things
begging for acknowledgment
I did not know what to do
with all these words
which were now
colliding with each other
bouncing through my brain
spilling onto blank screens
onto paper margins
eventually on my very skin
always demanding more
words became a mantra
a meditation
a prayer
that cut through the din:
This is your truth
it lives
it breaths
it can no longer be contained
your voice must be heard

© 2017 & Revised © 2018 Christine Elizabeth Ray – All Rights Reserved

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