Tweet 10 Bee Magic

I sit, angry, stiff. Then I become aware of the bees on the ivy’s spiky balls of blooms. The soft hum of them and their warm, steady presence soothe me. I breathe, one hand on my belly. I remember the bee women in Starhawk’s The Fifth Sacred Thing, working their magic.

[re-posted from today’s tweet @tryingmywings]

Tweet 8 Climate Change

I move the broom across the courtyard. The sun pokes holes in the back of my arms. Papery blossoms, sunflower seed shells, tiny, downy feathers collect at my feet. After, the sun bores into my calves when I bow forward in yoga. This sun is not the sun I grew up with.

[re-posted from today’s tweet @tryingmywings]

Tweet 5 Ashamed in Advance

I’m agitated when I walk outside. We’ve made course rules, no cross-talk, no unasked for feedback. I’m afraid I will break them, blurt things out, cause harm. I face west, stretch my spine. I swing my arms from side to side, let the warm desert wind brush away my shame.

[re-posted from today’s tweet @tryingmywings]

Tweet 4 Fuzzy Memory

We’re in the girl’s bathroom, plain white tile, 5th grade. The group of black girls in my class are breaking the rules, I think. I am a goody-two-shoes, say some snooty, uptight white girl thing? Later, our teacher names me the ringleader, and the black girls laugh.

[I plan to post one tweet each day in November @tryingmywings. I am re-posting them here.]

Tweet 3 Big Belief

Today I see a photo in the L.A. Times, 70,000 people protesting the anti-immigrant Prop 187. A sea of color surrounds city hall, young Latino Americans taking to the streets in 1994. I cry, big pride in them. Good chills thrum down my thighs, big belief in Californians.

[I plan to post one tweet each day in November @tryingmywings. I am re-posting them here.]

Tweet 2 School Bus, 4th Grade

My stepfather’s house in Connecticut, five acres, a creek. The school bus stops on a dirt road, long, sand-colored buildings, no trees. All the black kids get on. I am eight years old. Today, at 61, I cringe. Even then, shouldn’t I have known something was deeply awry?

[I plan to post one tweet each day in November @tryingmywings. I am re-posting them here.]

What We Carry (24)

I walk south toward my old neighborhood with my lime green umbrella, carrying my shade. I got it in my head I might want to change the location of my writing retreat in November. So today I walk south to find David, who I knew from convivial impromptu gatherings of neighbors in the street at dusk, who has a beautiful inn there in a bend of the road where cicadas meet to sing, to see if this might be a spot for us. Two young people stare at me when I open the door to the lobby. They are cool toward me, stiff. David doesn’t own the hotel anymore. I leave and walk north, past David’s old house. It looks the same, bougainvillea spilling over the brick wall. I didn’t know how much I was looking forward to our brief reunion, that welcome and warm mutual regard. I feel tears pushing, but I know the sadness in me is bigger than this grief. What comes next is the way the young man and woman in the lobby seemed to freeze, how they believed I didn’t belong there, and now I do cry because I am weary of people making me feel like I am less than. (I think of people of color, then, about having moments like this all the time.) So, I carry my shade, and I carry my sadness, softer now, held low against my belly with kindness, and I walk north. I cross the creek bed and let the wildness of the ravine seep into me. When I am on the other side, the church bells begin. I stand in the shade of a big desert willow and listen to the bells ring the noon hour, umbrella dangling, eyes closed. In the quiet after, I hear a small bird calling in the willow. A cicada starts it’s song, and a breeze comes. I stand there for a long time, taking it in, the big gift of it all washing through me. Then I walk north again, toward home, carrying my shade.