Three years ago, in the middle of the night, I woke up to my neighbours. A female voice said, “Stop attacking me.” Then a male voice said, “I’m not attacking you, just walk with me.” I sat up suddenly in bed and started to think, What do I do? What do I do? What do I do?
Do I call the police? Will calling the police lead to more harm than good? At my job where I run workshops for youth about the justice system, I hear a lot of stories of police brutality. I was hesitant to call.
The mountains across the lake are softened by haze.
The pebbles dig into my back and bum as I lie down,
I sit up.
A cool breeze sweeps over my skin,
the waves of a boat wake lap against the shore.
I smell diesel.
It feels like I’m at the cottage but it’s the end of my work day and I live here.
It’s been incredibly hot the past few weeks – I feel I’ve moved to the desert. The grass is dying. The apple trees cry for water. Desert doesn’t work for me. After 2 days in Nevada and Utah my whole body softened as we drove into the mountains of Colorado – trees, humidity, I can breath again.
And as the coolness of the evening sweeps in I can feel my body softening once more and memories flood in. Diving off the dock at Rangers, hiking Cape Spear alone, running up the freshly cut road in Bhutan, searching for banana slugs with my cousins in the redwoods. Pieces of my life. Pieces of what brought me here.
The small birds flit in and out of the young poplar trees beside the water and I thought that I had to use post-it notes and logic to remember my life. Chronological order. Seriousness.
I simply sit on the beach and the memories flood in.
Washing over me until I become whole.
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