* * * * * DO WHAT YOU LOVE * * * * *
(*warning - triggering subject matter)
Cry me a river.
Okay, so they forgot it was your birthday.
What’s the big deal?
Not quite the sweet-sixteen you expected, but
...it was sure cheaper than one of those Sweet-Sixteen blowouts that seem to be the norm now.
Spending your birthday alone in the park by the railroad tracks, eating a Little Debbie Cake and sulking.
Alone until that boy showed up.
Speaking of the norm, why is it that getting raped seems to be treated as normal?
Oh, boo-hoo. Cry me a river.
Next time, maybe you’ll think twice before leaving the house with your tits...
(I hated how they used the word "tits," as if a woman's breasts were dirty.)
hanging out for all the world to see, the Defense Team’s entire stance.
Those people have never woken up feeling shame with nightmare-swollen eyes.
They don’t know what it feels like to awaken each morning, young and beautiful with the whole world at your feet,
and to finally step out to create a new life—completely covered—wearing long-sleeved turtlenecks and baggy jeans.
Then, to finally realize, it wasn’t the clothing you wore; it was the sickness of the college boy.
Let them laugh at your bungling ways and shyness and aversion to men wearing Izod shirts.
Now, there are not enough clothes in the world to cover wounds that are invisible.
By Lisa H. Owens
April 22, 2021
A Micro-fiction directed at the injustice of certain crimes against humanity.
I tested the water, gingerly skimming the surface with my big toe. It was a delicate balancing act to stay upright, one foot held aloft ready to flee at the first sign of trouble just past the break, or ready to step down into a gentle tidal pool. It was an exercise in trust. Trust in the sea—my fickle friend. Placid waters could be deceiving.
Would the sea betray my trust? We’d always been so close, the sea and I. We shared memories of midnight swims. The sea kissing and cradling my bare skin as I sought tranquility. I trusted the sea to give me what I longed for, a place to rest. I submerged into a roiling turmoil hidden just beneath the surface. The sea pulled me down. Held me under. It was beautiful to let someone else decide my fate.
I felt happy, then confused as the reality came crashing down, smothering my senses. I was drowning. A gentle swirl—two waves kissing then mingling as the two became one—transformed into an angry undertow. The two covertly clashing like the mighty Titans. My life flashed before my eyes. We’ve heard about that happening, one’s life flashing before one’s eyes, just before a life altering accident. Floating as if in a dream, I saw a vision of my wedding day, standing at the altar in Mama’s wedding dress as we repeated vows to be faithful:
"I take thee to be my wedded husband, to have and to hold from this day forward, for better, for worse, for richer, for poorer, in sickness and in health, to love and to cherish, till death do us part, according to God's holy ordinance; and thereto I pledge thee my faith."
Two becoming as one. It was a farce. I was as lonely as I’d ever been; but the Lord works in mysterious ways. With arms open wide, I welcomed a gentle death. They say drowning, after the initial panic of it all, is akin to sleeping. You take in that gulp of water and relax into it. It would feel like heaven, in a way, to let it all go. The sleepless nights. The loneliness. The exhaustion. Is it giving up to not fight with all one’s might to break the surface? To not struggle to launch out of the depths, gasping for breath, releasing the saltiness of it all? My eyes fixated on a ray of light as the sea called me home.
By Lisa H. Owens
Inspired by a near-death experience in the Pacific Ocean.
See Video Narration by Alan Johnson on the Home Page